The Lying Game

Chris Christie - “Too Big?”

Our boy was great in the latest Republican so-called debate, which mesmerized the public a few nights ago on the Fox Business Network. There were so many New Jersey Moments that will fill Gov. Christie’s highlight reel about his amazing race for the presidency in 2016, which will live in the annals forever, or when he quits politics and becomes a lobbyist for good government.

My favorite was our governor’s fight with the callow youth, Marco Rubio, who questioned Christie’s veracity.

How could his unworthy opponent (Chris Christie), the boy senator from Florida asked, in effect, deny the truth about such things as having donated money to Planned Parenthood, supported Justice Sotomayor’s nomination, and other squishy moderate liberal positions?

It was bad enough the remaining members of the ratpack still in the hunt had to face the inquisition conducted by the Torquemadas of Fox Business, led by Maria Bartiromo, the ex-CNBC “Money Honey,” who may have caused a market dip or two distracting traders while being the first woman reporting from the Stock Exchange floor in the 1990’s.

But here was the Rubio kid rapid firing gotcha’ queries, anyone of which could prove fatal to Christie’s appeal to the Republican base, which already was treating him as if he was another Eugene V. Debs.

“What do you say to that, fatso?” the kid legislator from the land of silk and money, as I think of Florida, seemed to be gloating in advance, tasting the fruits of his staff research.

“There you go again,” I could hear the words of Saint Ronald debating with Jimmy Carter in the 1980 presidential debates, “bringing up the past.”

Facts? Fact checkers? They have no place in this race, starring such distinguished fact-impaired accuracy freaks as Doc Carson, whose autobiography is filled with “inconsistency of intellect,” as he called it in explaining his book of fibs; Carly Fiorina, who wanted us to believe she was the best computer industry CEO since the invention of the algorithm; Ted Cruz, who denies evolution, and Donald Trump who argues global warming is a hoax, invented by the Chinese. They distract the voters.

For the record, Christie denied all the charges.

It’s awesome the way our whale of a guy in the debates is able to deny the facts or true facts or even facts reported by Fox News. He didn’t blink as he looked into the eyes of the American people, at least 8 million Fox Business channel fans. It was as if Christie was saying: whom do you believe—me, who you can see with your own eyes, or the facts?

What his detractors don’t get is that Christie doesn’t think he’s lying. He’s only following the mantra of Rupert Murdoch: “ I can honestly say I am telling the truth, as I see it.”

Anyway, if he was falling short of telling the truth, why blame him? There is the New Jersey Defense.

What people don’t understand is that not telling the truth is no crime in New Jersey public life. Politics is a contact sport in New Jersey. In the slime pit of our politics, everybody does it. If you don’t lie, we are first suspicious. What’s the guy hiding? If you can’t lie, why don’t you do something useful in society? Go into an honorable profession, become a car dealer on Route 46.

Being inconsistent with intellect is a condition especially prevalent in Drumthwacket (the governor’s mansion). Corzine lied…McGreevy lied…Whitman lied… Florio lied. And that’s only our last four governors.

Lying already is in the genetic code of public servants. I personally blame it on the environment. An honest politician can drive down the Turnpike, on his way to Washington, and by the time he crosses the Delaware River he is corrupt.

Whether it is the pollution from the Exxon refineries or the smell coming across the Hudson from New York state politics, morality is not a high priority in our public servants.

This is how our governor is able to say on TV he should be elected because he balanced the budget, despite the annual deficits; the economy is booming, ignoring nine bond downgrades; our transportation fund is bankrupt so the bridges are falling down, and he didn’t know anything about the lane closures at the GWB.

The ability to lie without seeming to be lying to the naked eye is an asset today, especially timely for any candidate fighting to wear the mantle of the last Republican president, George the Mad, without whom the Iraq War would not be possible. His lies about the WMD and that we won the war 14 years ago are a challenge for any future Republican president.

Young punks like Rubio, who Cruz himself called “an unusually good liar,” trying to throw mud on our guy by playing the truth card, is dirty politics. I defend our governor’s reputation. He’s a world-class prevaricator, worthy of becoming liar-in-chief. Credit where credit is due.

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Marvin Kitman
January 19, 2016

The writer is chairman of “Christie for President in 2024.”

Public Domain Photo of the George Washington Bridge by National Park Service Photographer Jack E. Boucher from Wikimedia Commons.