Morning Joe, 1/22/13, 7:00 PM ET

With the festivities over, can the GOP and Democrats find compromise?

David Ignatius joins Moring Joe to discuss President Barack Obama’s inaugural address saying it “fell flat” and didn’t address all major issues.  Cokie...

Is Chris Christie ready to tackle Hillary in 2016?

Updated

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie is currently enjoying his highest approval ratings yet—74% of the state thinks he’s doing a good job. (Among Republicans, those numbers jump even higher: 93% of New Jersey Republicans think Christie is governing the state well.) And since it’s never too early for American politics to look ahead, is Christie ready to tackle the stalwart Democrat he could be matched up against in 2016?

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is currently polling ahead of the other leading Democrat with a shot at 2016, Vice President Joe Biden—67% of people would support another Clinton presidency, while only 48% said they would support Biden taking higher office.

“What it does show you is the intensity behind Hillary Clinton is much stronger than the intensity behind Joe Biden,” ABC News’ Cokie Roberts said. “Particularly among non-democrats—independents, she has very high marks among, and even some Republicans. Does she look at that and say I can be a successful cross-over candidate? That’s a significant change from when she ran in 2008.”

As for Christie, high approval ratings and his no-nonsense style of leadership have made him an ideal candidate in gridlocked Washington.

“Christie is the model,” former RNC chairman Michael Steele remarked.

“I’m glad the Republicans are not chasing shiny objects anymore,” Chairman of the Mississippi Republican Party Joe Nosef remarked. Off air, Nosef expanded, explaining that speaking on the issues—as Christie does—will sway voters.

“We’ve got to quit worrying about what day Obama’s birth announcement was in the Hawaii newspaper and quit trying to figure out a way to pull Electoral College tricks. And of course we’ve got to quit talking about variations and degrees of rape,” he said. “Conservatives win when we talk about issues voters care about. We need to stick with that.”

Nosef continued: “I think Christie will do as well in Mississippi as he does in New Jersey. I think people appreciate his frankness and they appreciate his lack of fear to speak to people in an honest way,” he added. Nosef will be in Charlotte this week for the Republican National Committee meeting that will address the party’s problems and future.

“Chris Christie is a person who is very hard not to like,” David Ignatius remarked. “ Ithought the defining moment of this campaign was the images of Barack Obama and Chris Christie together solving real problems after superstorm Sandy. Being together, working together, Republican and Democrat. You ask what I would have like to see more of in the inaugural address, it would have been the spirit of what you saw with Christie and Obama.”

Is Chris Christie ready to tackle Hillary in 2016?

Updated