Is the “most electable” argument dead in 2016?
Examining 2008 and 2012 from the Republican side, John McCain and Mitt Romney ended up winning their respective nominations based upon the conventional wisdom that they were the “most electable” of their field. Obviously their candidacies resulted in failure as Barack Obama won in both cases.
In 2016, conventional wisdom is holding that New Jersey Governor Chris Christie is the “most electable” Republican to run against Hillary Clinton. Based upon the last two presidential elections, will Republican primary voters buy-in to the “electability” argument in 2016?
Report from PolicyMic:
It’s no secret that Christie’s relationship with his affiliated political party has been on thin ice since he decided not to attend a Mitt Romney rally last November. After all, it was just a short 15-minute drive from his headquarters in Trenton, N.J. Although he claims he was busy in the Hurricane Sandy recovery effort, the snub happened right before the 2012 presidential election, and it hasn’t been forgotten.
According to a Monmouth University poll, Christie is the most threatening Republican opponent to the former secretary of state if a presidential election were to take place today. He only trails her by four points, while all his party adversaries trail by double digits. Although he’s likely the better choice to run against Clinton, Christie’s favorability rating among GOP primary voters is worse than his rivals.
Considering that Christie is the “hottest” leader in the U.S., measuring 53.1 degrees in this Quinnipiac University poll, he still lags behind his potential primary opponents when it comes to Republican-base voters. However close he seems to beating out Clinton in the polls, it’s still uncertain if the GOP voters will even allow him to get the chance to try in 2016.
Is it a question of GOP voters “allowing” Christie to beat Hillary Clinton or is that a pipe dream given how 2008 and 2012 turned out with regard to “electability?”