Authors: Jeanette Torres
(NEW YORK) -- New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie may be at the top of the veepstakes lists, but his approval rating has hit a peak in his home state one year before his re-election battle.
According to a Fairleigh Dickinson University poll out on Tuesday, 56 percent of New Jersey voters approve of Christie, while 33 percent disapprove.
“It’s hard to imagine that a minority party governor could really do much better,” poll director Peter Woolley told the New Jersey Star-Ledger, before joking about Newark Mayor Cory Booker. ”Unless maybe he runs into a burning building and rescues an old lady. But that trick has been taken.”
Last May, Christie only broke even in the same poll, with 44 percent of New Jersey voters approving and 44 percent disapproving of the job he’s done in the state.
Along with the high approval ratings, 51 percent of voters have a favorable view of Christie, including 29 percent of Democrats.
Talks of Christie getting into the GOP race were the loudest when it looked like his own 2013 re-election fight would be a bruising battle, but these new numbers show he is in strong shape in the Garden State. The Democrats have also not come up with an opponent yet who would pose a formidable challenge to Christie next year.
This may mean little to whether Romney decides he wants Christie on his ticket. Still, if Romney loses in November, a strong win for Christie next year will continue the chatter around his own 2016 vice-presidential run.
The poll also revealed that 50 percent of New Jersey voters think the state is headed in the right direction, while 41 percent say it’s going in the wrong direction.
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio