A Whimpering Roar

NJ Gov. Chris Christie (R), speaks in April 2014. (Photo: AP)

When we last checked, the Chris Christie Show was still in development, though leaked hints coming from the New Jersey governor’s camp suggested the beleaguered Garden State boss hoped to appeal to voters over common ground by claiming his one-percenter financial status is somehow a hardship.

Sometimes it seems a good idea to stick with a bad idea; this happens when the new good idea is even worse than the old bad idea. For instance:

For months, we have wondered how Gov. Chris Christie thinks he can win the presidency when New Jersey is in such rotten shape after his six years in office.

Now we may have our answer: The man has lost touch with reality.

In a national TV interview Monday, Christie was asked to explain why 65 percent of New Jersey voters think he’d make a bad president.

His answer: We love him so much that we want him to remain our governor.

“They want me to stay,” he told Megyn Kelly of Fox News. “A lot of those people in that 65 percent want me to stay. And I’ve heard that from lots of people at town hall meetings.”

Maybe he doesn’t believe that himself. That might step on his core pitch about telling the truth, but it would at least tether him to the planet earth.

The worry is that he really believes it. Politicians like him live in a bubble, surrounded by sycophants. Hard truths have a tough time penetrating.

(Star-Ledger)

The editorial board of the Star-Ledger is pretty straightforward, running under the headline, “Gov. Christie loses his marbles on national TV”. And perhaps the Governor should take a moment to consider what the newspaper editors are tryin gto tell him. Such as things are, Mr. Christie’s seeming insanity is on full display, as yesterday’s Associated Press article makes clear:

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie says his 2013 race against a female opponent has helped prepare him for a potential campaign against Hillary Rodham Clinton.

The likely Republican presidential contender was asked during a town hall event in New Hampshire Monday evening why he believed he would be well-suited to run against the favorite for the Democratic nomination if he chooses to run and wins his party’s nomination.

Among his reasons, Christie cited his commanding victory over Democrat Barbara Buono during his re-election campaign.

“Everybody thought, ‘Oh no, no … look at this … this is going to be bad. Christie’s gonna lose his cool. This woman’s yelling at him all the time. He’s going to yell back at her. It’s going to ugly really fast and he’s going to lose,'” Christie recalled.

“I think that experience of campaigning under that kind of stress, in that atmosphere, against that type of opponent, prepares you extraordinarily well to be able to run against Secretary Clinton, if that’s what I chose to do,” he said.

We might not be top-flight political analysts with full calendars for cable news appearances, so our nickel’s worth of free advice is probably worth less; let’s say two cents.

The first thing Mr. Christie, or any of his male Republican colleagues, need to remember is that a candidate is a candidate. When framed as a question of “this woman”, against “that type of opponent”, it is easy to underestimate a former Secretary of State and U.S. Senator because of her womanhood.

To wit: “This woman’s yelling at him all the time. He’s going to yell back at her. It’s going to ugly really fast and he’s going to lose”, as the governor explained. The question has never been one of “yelling”; rather, it has to do with the idea that one is not yelling as opponent to opponent, but, rather, as man to woman. The Devil, as such, is in the details.Joanie Caucus: "A great lady, Simone de Beauvoir, once said that there are two kinds of people; human beings and women.  And when women start acting like human beings, they are accused of trying to be men."  (G. B. Trudeau, Doonesbury, 17 October 1972)

This is what Republicans need to figure out: The old Simone de Beauvoir quote about there being two kinds of people in the world―human beings and women―is still in effect. Stop supporting it. Stop relying on it. Stop living it.

The Trenton Tough Guy has a lot to learn, it seems; after all, he seems to think he can be president. But if he is going to waste his own and everybody else’s time actually pretending to run, it would behoove Mr. Christie to try leading his party into the twenty-first century instead of simply further into the muck and mire of scandal and stupidity.

____________________

Editorial Board. “Gov. Christie loses his marbles on national TV”. The Star-Ledger. 20 May 2015.

Associated Press. “Christie: Experience Running Against A Woman Has Prepared Me For Hillary”. Talking Points Memo. 19 May 2015.

Trudeau, Garry B. Doonesbury. 17 September 1972.

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