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Poll: Majority of residents say N.J. is ‘worse off’ because of Christie

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Gov. Chris Christie at a news conference during the budget showdown.
Gov. Chris Christie at a news conference during the budget showdown. - ()

Gov. Chris Christie’s job rating is at an all-time low of 15 percent, although he’s still hovering above single-digit approval, according to the latest Monmouth University Poll.

In turn, 80 percent disapprove of the job he’s doing. His ratings last year in May 2016 were 27 approve and 63 percent disapprove.

Christie’s actions during the recent state shutdown didn’t come off positive among those polled, with two-thirds expressing negative views of him spending the day at Island Beach State Park.

"It really is difficult to drive approval ratings into the single digits barring something like a criminal conviction. However, you have to admire Christie's seeming tenacity for trying to get his numbers down to that level," said Patrick Murray, director of the independent Monmouth University Polling Institute.

"In reality, Christie may have found the floor for his ratings, but it's a level where most of his constituents now feel his time on office has hurt the state."

The poll found a majority (55 percent) of New Jersey residents feel that the state is worse off now because of Christie’s time in office. It’s a big jump when compared to a year ago (41 percent). Only 15 percent believe the state is currently better off, with 28 percent saying it’s about the same as it was before his time as governor.

When asked who to blame for the state shutdown this month, most residents equally blamed the governor and the state legislature (54 percent). Twenty-eight put more responsibility in Christie’s corner, and 14 percent put more on the legislature.

When focused on the state budget stalemate, 66 percent of New Jerseyans knew it was caused by a disagreement over a proposal to change how Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey operates. Only 16 percent of the public believed that the legislation was motivated to make Horizon more transparent. Most believed (54 percent) it was driven by some sort of political payback against the insurer.

"Neither the governor nor the bill's legislative sponsors made a persuasive case about why this bill was necessary, especially to Horizon subscribers who are largely satisfied with their insurance provider," Murray said.

The Monmouth University Poll was conducted by telephone between July 6 and 9 with 800 New Jersey adults. The results have a margin of error of 3.5 percent. To see all the questions and answers, click here.

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Emily Bader

Emily Bader

Emily Bader is the Web Editor and Social Media Coordinator at NJBIZ. She is a Brielle, N.J. native and a Rutgers University alum. You can contact her at emilyb@njbiz.com.

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