Republican New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie has taken a beating in the polls since his administration was rocked by the “Bridgegate” and Hurricane Sandy scandals.
Before the pair of scandals hit in January, Christie led Clinton by two percentage points and the Republican presidential primary field by eleven percentage points. Now, according to a CNN/ORC poll released Monday, Christie trails Clinton by 16 points, 55%-39%, and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee by four percentage points among GOP presidential primary contenders.
In December, Christie led Clinton 48% to 46%, but according to CNN polling director Keating Holland, his support among Independents has plummeted by 20 points since December. Christie now has the support of only 39% of Independents.
The poll, which surveyed Republicans and Independents, found that Huckabee led the GOP field with 14% of the vote. He was followed by Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) with 13% and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and Christie with 10% each.
Since Huckabee was not included in the last poll, Holland, the polling director, said that though it was impossible to know how much support Christie lost due to his scandals, it is still “a pretty safe bet that the drop in Christie’s support against Clinton is due to the recent news stories about the bridge.”
The poll, which was conducted January 31-February 2 and has a margin of error of +/- three percentage points, found that Christie still polls best among Republicans in a hypothetical matchup against Clinton.