Sources close to New Jersey Governor Chris Christie told Yellowhammer this morning that Christie has filed the necessary paperwork to begin fundraising for a 2013 re-election campaign.
While it has long been believed the larger-than-life Governor would seek re-election, it hasn’t been a lock. In spite of Christie’s national profile, he’s still a Republican governor in a deep blue state.
Speculation about Christie’s immediate plans can now be put to rest. He will indeed be running for Governor of New Jersey again in 2013.
But other important questions still remain. Most notably, will Cory Booker, the popular Democrat mayor of Newark, challenge Christie for the governorship?
New Jersey insiders currently feel that Booker is leaning more toward a 2014 U.S. Senate run than he is a 2013 run for Governor. New Jersey’s senior U.S. Senator Frank Lautenberg is expected to retire in 2014, leaving an open seat at which Booker could to take a shot. He has already established a federal PAC to explore a senate run.
Christie appears well positioned for re-election, especially if Booker doesn’t run. But even if he does, it doesn’t change the fact that Christie is incredibly popular in New Jersey. In a recent Rutgers-Eagleton poll, Christie received a whopping 67% favorability rating. In a PublicMind poll published by Wall St. Journal today, he’s all the way up to 77%.
Christie is also one of the early frontrunners for 2016 presidential race. It will be worth watching how he continues to balance governing in a blue state in the national spotlight with his Republican presidential primary ambitions.
Click here to see Gov. Christie on MSNBC talk about meeting Alabama House Speaker Mike Hubbard.