The Associated Press reports that New Jersey Governor Chris Christie officially filed papers Monday to run for re-election in 2013.
Christie, a rising national star in the Republican Party, has been a relatively popular governor despite New Jersey’s Democratic leanings. And his approval and favorability ratings have soared in the wake of Superstorm Sandy.
A recent Farleigh Dickinson University poll found that Christie’s approval rating jumped more than 20 points from a poll taken before the storm — from 56 per cent to an astounding 77 per cent. The biggest increase came among Democrats — 67 per cent now approve of the job Christie is doing, compared with just 26 per cent of Democrats that gave Christie high marks before Sandy.
“Much like Governor Christie’s embrace of the support the state received from President Obama in the days after the storm, Democratic respondents approve of Christie for his leadership, at least for now,” said Krista Jenkins, the director of the university’s polling centre, in a statement.
But Christie is still not seen as a lock to win re-election — particularly if it ends up being marquee matchup with Newark Mayor Cory Booker. The Newark Star-Ledger reports that Booker, a Democrat, plans to decide by mid-December if he will make a run. A Quinnipiac poll taken in October (before the storm) found that Christie narrowly led Booker by a 46-42 margin.
Christie polls better against two other potential Democratic challengers, New Jersey state senators Richard Codey and Barbara Buono. State Senator Steven Sweeney and U.S. Rep. Frank Pallone have also been speculated about as possible Democrats contenders.