Has He No Shame?
Now that it’s all over, I can confess I have lost a little respect for my boy in the fight.
I’m talking about Chris Christie. Two Ton Christie, undefeated heavyweight in New Jersey politics since 2010, has been a major disappointment in his fight to be our first governor since Woodrow Wilson in the White House.
I still can’t get over the way the champ threw in the towel in the first round of the primaries. Just because he finished sixth in New Hampshire! A smart politician would have made a positive out of it (“We’re number six!”), reminding the people there had been 17 candidates. Marco Rubio claimed victory every time he finished third.
And the big fellow was gaining momentum in the polls. He had been seventh the previous week.
Our guy was the only candidate who could have stopped Trump. Remember what he did to “the boy senator” from Florida in the debates, making him melt down like an ice sculpture at an afternoon Florida bar mitzvah, by repeating a few of his words.
As a Federal prosecutor, Christie could have had Trump on his heels in the debates, questioning the argument we should vote for him because he was so rich. His financial record had more holes than Swiss cheese, some big enough to drive a Mack Truck through.
I will tell you something. Even though our boy was the governor of a great state like New Jersey, he seems to be afraid of Trump now. You can smell the fear every time the two of them are on the same stage.
I was thinking about all of this Tuesday as one of 1.1 million Registered Republicans eligible to vote in the New Jersey primary. As I studied the ballot choices—Donald J. Trump (“Republicans for Responsible Government,” as his slate of delegates was labeled), Ted Cruz (“Ted Cruz Consistent Courageous Conservative”) and John R. Kasich (“Kasich for America”) –it suddenly occurred to me something was missing.
There was no place to vote for Chris Christie.
Holy Dunkin’ Donuts! How was it possible that our boy was not on the ballot in his home state?
Now I realize it’s hard work getting on the ballot. Names don’t make it based on aggregates of five favorite polls, like the cable news networks cast debates. There’s the grunt work in the trenches of petitions being signed and validated.
And being on the ballot at this stage might only be a symbolic value. But the basic idea is you never know when lightning will strike. That’s why candidates always predict they are going to win. Miracles do happen.
The only mention of a “Christie” on the official ballot was a Trump delegate named “Christopher J. Christie.” Was that his name in the Witness Protection Program – if that is indeed our boy? I didn’t want to blow his cover by inquiring.
What a sad turn of the screw.
Here was a man who could have been president in 2012. The party establishment was begging him to run. But our boy said he was not ready to run, or even jog, for president in 2012.
Here was a man who the distinguished industrialist and opinion- maker David Koch called “a true political hero,” a man who had the courage to call Trump “a carnival barker,” who he could never endorse.
And here was the man stunning the political world by endorsing Trump in February, only two days after New Hampshire. It was a shock to see him on stage as if auditioning for a role of apprentice butler at Mar-a-Lago. Had he been seduced by Trump’s charm or had they been feeding him some kind of stuff in his cannolis?
It was hard to believe that a man of principle back home in New Jersey had turned so flexible. He was kissing the ring of a candidate who was demeaning and disparaging in the press, while claiming to be his best bud. Trump was the first of the rivals in the debates with the cojones to bring up the Bridgegate scandal. “He knew about it (the plan to close Fort Lee access lanes),” Trump explained. “How do you have breakfast with people every day of your lives and not know?”
Ever since Christie came in from the cold, and is said to be serving as” leader of the transition team,” the boss seems to be treating the champ like a palooka who can hear the birdies. Throwing him another Oreo or two would take the sting out of the casual cruelty.
Aside from carrying the presumptive president’s golf bag and other luggage at Trump hotels on his days away from his desk in Trenton, Christie has been awarded the plum of serving as the apology secretary for his “close friend” who has a tendency to shoot from the lip.
The other day the governor was repairing the damage to Trump’s standing as legal scholar after advancing the argument that judges should recluse themselves on the basis of race or ethnicity, perhaps even being transgender. The unusual view of the court system was being enunciated in the case about Trump University, known in the academic world as Fuck U.
It was a matter of opinion, Christie argued, and is protected by the first amendment. In showing his respect for the rule of law, his new boss is also in favor of loosening libel laws so G- men can round up all his critics. I dread being locked up in a press camp having to listen Wolf Blitzer explaining the situation.
I’m now having to face up to the champ still might not be ready to run for president, regardless of the efforts of the “Christie for President in 2012,”(later amended to 2016 and 2020), movement, of which I’m the founding father. Our theory was the only way we could get Christie out of the state was to kick him up to the White House. It just may have been a pipe dream.
I tell you all of what’s been happening is so depressing its enough to make you finish a whole box of Oreos, the official state snack of the Christie administration.
June 9, 2016