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Christie a shoo-in for second term as governor

Glenn Townes | 10/31/2013, 4:19 p.m.
Christie slams Atlantic City mayor for not following orders

With less than a week until Election Day, Gov. Chris Christie is all but guaranteed to be re-elected as head of New Jersey, fueling further speculation that the paunchy politico is priming for a presidential run in 2016, according to political pundits across the state and the nation.

Christie holds between a 15 to 25 percentage point lead over Democratic hopeful Barbara Buono in various local and statewide polls. The high-profile governor has flooded the airwaves with dozens of commercials and zigzagged around the state in a campaign blitz, which many experts contend has secured his place as a second-term governor. Add to the mix the one-year anniversary of Hurricane Sandy and the recent announcement that additional financial resources are on the way to victims of the storm, and Christie is a shoo-in.

The expected large margin of victory could easily enhance the Christie bid for president in 2016—a notion that has been festering for awhile in various camps. A big win in the blue Garden State would show bipartisan appeal. However, New Jerseyans are split on the issue of whether the occasionally garish governor would be a prim president. A Quinnipiac University poll released earlier this week revealed 48 percent of recipients would like to see a Republican run for president in 2016 and 41 percent would not. Most Republicans in the state said Christie would make a good president; most Democrats said he would not; independent voters were also split—with about 42 percent saying Christie would make a good president and 39 percent said he would not. A random sampling of some New Jerseyans also revealed mixed results.

“Two things are certain: Gov. Chris Christie will easily be re-elected, and then he will begin running for president,” said Ed Schiffendecker of Lacey Township. “At the same time, he will try to cater to both factions of a divided Republican Party.”

Joe Skidmore of Long Branch said, “What has he [Christie] really done for those hurting in the lower and middle class? He considers a minimum wage livable? He bullies anyone who challenges him.”

Election Day is Tuesday, Nov. 5.