The Bridgegate scandal is taking a big toll on Gov. Chris Christie's popularity, believability and presidential aspirations. A new national poll conducted by Bloomberg News has very bad news for the cranky one:
Americans aren’t buying the explanations offered by Chris Christie and Hillary Clinton about controversies that could stand between them and the White House if either runs for president in 2016.
Sixty-three percent say they don’t believe the New Jersey governor’s claims that he knew nothing of a plan by his top aides to create a politically motivated traffic jam, according to a Bloomberg National Poll.
“I think he kind of knew what was going on and chose to ignore it,” said David Smith, 66, a Republican-leaning retired high school science teacher from Quincy,Massachusetts.
Republicans and independents don't buy his denials about being in the dark about the plan to shut down traffic on the GWB.
According to the Bloomberg News poll, Christie's popularity is down to 32 percent from 50 percent in June, before the bridge scandal unfolded.
That number includes 43 percent of Republicans who don't believe the brash Republican governor. Sixty-three percent of independents don't believe him, and a whopping 79 percent of Democrats.
The poll isn't great news for Hillary Clinton, however. Before the Bridgegate scandal, Christie had taken the momentum he gained from his reelection victory and was in a virtual tie with Clinton in December of 2013.
A new CNN poll finds that New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton are essentially tied in a potential 2016 presidential matchup.Christie gets the support of 48 percent of registered voters, a 2-point lead over Clinton's 46 percent, but one that is within the poll's 3-point margin of error.
Now Hillary has a sizable lead over Christie in just a few short months.
“These controversies appear to do more damage to Christie than to Clinton,” said J. Ann Selzer, president of Des Moines, Iowa-based Selzer & Co., which conducted the poll for Bloomberg. “It could be she’s built enough credibility on other fronts to carry her through. Christie is still in the hand-shake phase of his relationship with the public.”
If a head-to-head matchup were held now, Clinton would easily beat Christie. Among likely voters, 52 percent pick her and 39 percent go for Christie. Clinton takes independent voters by a slim margin, 45 percent to 43 percent.↓ Story continues below ↓
The survey of 1,001 adults has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.1 percentage points on the full sample and larger on subgroups. It was taken March 7-10.
Clinton’s partisan backers are also more strongly behind her than Christie’s. Thirty percent of Republicans say they want him to run; 78 percent of Democrats say that about her.
And we're still not even close to being finished with the investigation of Bridgegate.
It couldn't have happened to a nicer bully.