Most New Jersey voters believe an internal investigation clearing Gov. Chris Christie (R) of any wrongdoing in the George Washington Bridge lane closing scandal was a “whitewash,” according to a new poll.
A Quinnipiac poll released Wednesday found that of the 96 percent of Garden State voters who said they knew something about the so-called Bridgegate scandal, only 36 percent believed the review, conducted by lawyers representing Christie’s office, was a “legitimate investigation.” Fifty-six percent said the report was a “whitewash.”
Additionally, the survey found 51 percent of those who knew something about Bridgegate said they believed Christie was aware of his aides’ activities. Only 26 percent believed that Christie had ordered the lane closures himself, however.
The internal investigation that cleared Christie placed the blame for the traffic-snarling lane closures squarely on his former deputy chief of staff, Bridget Anne Kelly, and David Wildstein, a former Port Authority executive. Federal prosecutors and the New Jersey state legislature are still looking into the lane closures.
The Quinnipiac survey found voters were split 46-46 percent on whether the New Jersey Democrats’ investigation was legitimate or a “political witch hunt.”
Despite being “exonerated” by the internal review, the poll also found Christie’s job approval rating down to 49-44 percent.
Quinnipiac surveyed 1,356 New Jersey voters by phone from April 2-7. The poll had a margin of error of 2.7 percentage points.