The bad news for Christie is obvious: 47 percent does not a majority make. If less than half of voters say they are willing to consider voting for you, you're in a world of hurt. Compare his numbers to Hillary Clinton's: 66 percent of Americans said they would consider voting for her. Still, Christie is in better shape than any other Republican, so if he's looking for something to cling to, that's it.
But that's where the "good" news for Christie ends, because among Republicans, he is the least popular 2016 hopeful. Thirty percent of Republicans say they would definitely not vote for him. The next closest were former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, at 24 percent, and Texas Gov. Rick Perry, at 21 percent.
Who among Republicans has the most support? The answer may surprise you: 2012 nominee Mitt Romney, with 34 percent saying they would definitely vote for him. But Mitt's not running. Tied for second were former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and Huckabee with 15 percent apiece, but with more Republicans saying they would definitely not vote for Huckabee (24 percent) than Bush (18 percent), Bush gets the edge as the most popular potential GOP hopefully not named Mitt Romney, at least among Republicans.
But when you take a look at the country as a whole, the situation is the opposite: Bush is the least popular candidate Republicans could put forward. Forty-four percent say they would consider voting for him—but 48 percent say they definitely would not. That's a net swing of 12 points from Christie's numbers, and encapsulates the GOP's 2016 predicament in a nutshell. Not only is their "best" candidate in bad shape, but their base doesn't want to have anything to do with him, yet welcomes their worst candidate with open arms.