New Jersey Governor Chris Christie’s approval among registered voters has plunged to a point where only two of his predecessors can say they have had lower ratings.
Seventy-two percent of registered voters, including 52 percent of Republicans surveyed, said they disapprove of the Republican governor is doing in the Garden State, a Fairleigh Dickinson University PublicMind poll released Wednesday found.
The poll declared these the worst approval and disapproval ratings for Christie “ever.”
“Apparently we’ve not yet found the floor for the governor’s approval among voters in the state,” said PublicMind Director Krista Jenkins.
The poll was conducted shortly after Christie signed off on a 23 cent per gallon increase in the state’s gas tax.
According to Politico, only two previous Garden State governors have dipped lower than 21 percent in their approval rating. In both cases they had also recently instituted new or higher taxes.
Just two governors in recent memory have had worse approval ratings than Christie, but not by much.
In 1977, after he signed a law to create the state income tax, Democrat Brendan Byrne reached a nadir of 17 percent in a Rutgers-Eagleton poll. He went on to win reelection later that year. In 1990, facing a revolt over new taxes, former Gov. Jim Florio bottomed out at 18 percent. Florio narrowly lost his reelection bid in 1993.
Also plaguing Christie’s approval is the ongoing “Bridgegate” trial. A majority of voters polled believe Christie is lying about not being aware of the retaliatory lane closure. Christie has been less visible as a Donald Trump surrogate though he hasn’t abandoned him like some in the GOP. It’s not clear whether Trump is a factor. Christie is term limited and can’t seek reelection.