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If the next presidential election were held today and former Sen. Hillary Clinton and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie were on the ballot, 63 percent of respondents to this week's RBJ Daily Report Snap Poll would favor Christie.
Though the Iowa caucuses and New Hampshire primary are two years away, speculation about the 2016 presidential campaign is heating up. Many political observers and early voter polls suggest that Clinton, former New York senator and U.S. secretary of state, is the front-runner on the Democratic side. With his landslide re-election victory in November, Christie surged to the top of many Republican presidential nomination polls. (This week, he became embroiled in controversy when emails and texts revealed that Christie aides had ordered the closing of two lanes onto the George Washington Bridge to punish the mayor of Fort Lee, N.J., who did not endorse Christie for re-election.)
Not surprisingly, political affiliation played a role in the Snap Poll results. Ninety percent of Republicans who participated said they would favor Christie, compared with 84 percent of Democrats who prefer Clinton.
Two-thirds of those who identified themselves as non-affiliated or other prefer Christie.
In a recent CNN/ORC International poll, Christie and Clinton were neck and neck, with 48 percent of registered voters surveyed favoring Christie and 46 percent backing Clinton. Christie's two-point edge was within the poll's margin of error.
As recent history has shown, presidential nomination contests can be highly unpredictable, and the list of contenders is likely to be long. Among other possible 2016 presidential contenders, Democratic Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts garnered the support of 11 percent of the poll participants. Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan, Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin each were favored by 10 percent.
Nearly 1,000 readers participated in this week's poll, conducted Jan. 6 and 7 -- before the bridge scandal in New Jersey erupted.
In a 2016 presidential matchup between former New York Sen. Hillary Clinton and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, whom would you favor?
Chris Christie: 63%
Hillary Clinton: 37%
Among other possible 2016 presidential contenders, whom would you favor?
Sen. Elizabeth Warren, Massachusetts (D): 11%
Rep. Paul Ryan, Wisconsin (R): 10%
Gov. Andrew Cuomo, New York (D): 10%
Gov. Scott Walker, Wisconsin (R): 10%
Sen. Marco Rubio, Florida (R): 9%
Jeb Bush, former Florida governor (R): 9%
What is your political affiliation?
We can't afford not to have Hillary, her experience and her political network in charge of the country, not to mention that women can run this country better than the men. Just look at the settlements of the government shutdown and the recent budget agreement-women!
-Hutch Hutchison, In T'Hutch Ltd.
Hopefully we'll have a contest between a Republican and Democrat, not a RINO (Republican In Name Only) and a Democrat.
Christie's a Republican? Could have fooled me.
-Lester Wilson, North Syracuse
It's long past time for the Clintons to retire from the public scene.
-Jeff Hoffman, U.S. Airports
Ugh. This is more depressing than the -30 wind chills.
This country cannot afford to have another progressive liberal in the White House. Our economy is in shambles and unemployment has not recovered from the first Obama term. The foreign policy that has been followed has made the world a more dangerous place and in particular endangered the United States. Finally, the current president with the support of the Democrats in Congress has misled and lied to us to the point that trust is no longer freely given to the office of the president. That must be restored, and Hillary would not instill any more trust than Obama.
-Dave Coriale, Webster
This would be a great matchup for us in the Northeast. A moderate Democrat vs. a moderate Republican. However, one must wonder if the national Republican voter base will nominate a moderate, whereas Ms. Clinton is likely to gain wide support. I would definitely vote for Christie in this matchup, but if the Republicans give us Santorum or Paul, I would probably cross the line.
-John Calia, Vistage International
Neither-both politicians shown are out for themselves!
-John L. Sackett Jr.
We have had far too many socialists and family dynasties. No more Clintons or Bushes and their recycled bureaucrat friends. We need some fresh faces and more importantly fresh thinking and policies to clean up the Washington cesspool.
-Jim Weisbeck, Bloomfield
I deliberately did not choose either Christie or Clinton. The country needs someone other than status quo-Elizabeth Warren has stood up to the establishment and exposed truth multiple times. I admire her courage. Tammy Duckworth would be a good running mate for her; tough and reality-based.
We need to get back to states' rights and governing within the confines of the Constitution. The federal leviathan has grown far beyond the scope envisioned by our founding fathers. Chris Christie is merely a RINO and will take our great nation in the same direction the previous "establishment" candidates have. Big government, out-of-control deficit spending, and reliance on entitlements are status quo and should no longer be tolerated. I would like to see a principled candidate who will: Protect the rights afforded to us by the Constitution. Secure the borders. Lower taxes. Open oil and gas development. Unshackle businesses from regulation (allowing the free market to work thus creating jobs and opportunity for all). Balance a budget. I will throw my support behind Rand Paul in 2016 as he appears to be the best hope to lead our country to prosperity.
At this time, I don't think the Democrats have any viable candidates other than Hillary. But I do think Sen. Gillibrand may well be the future of the party. As for the Republicans, I can only hope they self-destruct in the primaries.
-Faye Casey, retired
For more comments, go to rbjdaily.com. To participate in the weekly RBJ Snap Poll, sign up for the Daily Report at rbj.net/dailyreport.asp.
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