Clinton v. Christie: Garden-State Thriller

Photograph by Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg

Hillary Clinton, U.S. secretary of state, arrives to a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing chaired by Senator John Kerry, a Democrat from Massachusetts, left, in Washington, in this May 23, 2012 file photo.

What do you get when you cross high personal approval ratings for the retired Secretary of State Hillary Clinton with record approval ratings for the very-active New Jersey Governor Chris Christie?

A serious matchup for 2016 — at least in the Garden State.

Voters in the seriously blue state of New Jersey are in love with the humorously popular Christie: Giving the Republican governor a 74-percent approval rating in the lastest Quinnipiac University poll released today — a record for any New Jersey governor in Quinnipiac’s 17 years of polling there. Accordingly, voters also support his re-election, by 71-23 percent.

At the same time, New Jersey’s voters have a 67 percent favorable view of Clinton, the former chief diplomat, senator from New York and first lady who has stepped out of public office and joined a lucrative speaking circuit. That pretty much matches the view that voters hold of Clinton nationally.

So, match the two on a hypothetical ballot in 2016, and New Jersey’s voters — at least today — side with Clinton by a margin of 49-45 percent, which is basically a tie, statistically, in a survey with a 2.9 percent margin of error. The survey of 1,1149 registered voters was run Feb. 13-17.

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