Christie’s Absence in Washington — Polling Slide in New Jersey

Photograph by Mark Wilson/Getty Images

Members of the National Governors Association speak to the media after a meeting with President Barack Obama at the White House on Feb. 24, 2014 in Washington, DC.

Absence makes the questions grow longer.

When leading Republican governors assembled at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce today for a news conference, they found themselves answering questions about the absence of their leader, Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey.

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal maintained that the organization is “more important” than any one governor. It represents 29, and faces 36 election contests this year.

Both Nikki Haley, governor of South Carolina, and Bill Haslam, governor of Tennessee, said they’d welcome the New Jersey Republican embroiled in controversy over the lane-closures at the George Washington Bridge last fall in their states — they also said they have no imminent plans for that.

Christie’s public approval rating back home has dropped 20 points over the past year, Monmouth University reported today, with the results of a new poll showing 50 percent approval and 44 percent disapproval among the Garden State’s residents. It is down 15 points since news broke that a deputy chief of staff for the governor had ordered “some traffic problems” in Fort Lee, N.J.

He is down from 70 percent approval in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.

“This hole is getting deeper. Christie’s image as the hero of Sandy is now just a fading memory,” said Patrick Murray, director of the Monmouth University Polling Institute.

Can Christie remain effective as chairman of the RGA?


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