Monday, July 12, 2010

Whoa! New York Times Discovers Chris Christie

There's a major (mostly positive) piece out about New Jersey Governor Chris Christie in the New York Times.
It seems that the Times has finally discovered that Christie is connecting with voters not just in New Jersey but maybe even across the country. In the piece Christie is described as "blunt, energetic, enjoying himself and having his way."
The Times says that Christie "defies expectations."
Whose "expectations" are they talking about?
Certainly not mine. And certainly not a lot of very happy people who voted for Christie. We always expected Chris Christie to succeed.
In the piece Patrick Murphy, the Director of the Monmouth University Polling Center says this about the Governor: “He’s a much better communicator than we realized, and people seem to be willing to go along with him for now.”
I had to laugh when I read "than we realized."
There it is again. Who exactly is "we"?
And I wondered: Where the hell have you been, Murphy? Didn't you watch Chris Christie during the campaign? Didn't you pay attention? Didn't you seem him connecting with people. Haven't you watched and listened during these first six months of the Governor's term? Has it not dawned on you yet that Chris Christie is a superb communicator; that he knows how to talk to the people of New Jersey; that he has a mastery of the state's problems and issues; that he says what he means and means what he says? Huh?
Now, I suppose we have to expect that a pollster will be a bit reticent and that he will be careful not to enthuse. So Murphy says that people "seem to be willing to go along with him [Christie] for now.
But it's almost like Murphy's waiting for the dam to burst -- for Christie's numbers to tank; or for the NJEA and other unions to re-emerge triumphantly. C'mon!
Another funny part of the piece in the Times is this comment by Camden County Democrat Boss and union chief George Norcross III: “I think the tough times have dictated straight talk and forceful moves, and that fits him [Christie] quite well."
Interesting. One has to wonder: Are there times that don't dictate straight talk? Should a leader not act forcefully and with conviction?
As far as I can tell people (especially people in New Jersey) have been thirsting for straight talk and forceful leadership for a long, long time. And they didn't get that kind of talk or that kind of leadership from the Democrats.
And then the Times story (near the end) sort of tips its hand with this revealing paragraph:
"It remains to be seen how well Mr. Christie will wear on New Jersey voters. Over the next year, people will begin to see the effects of his policies in their schools and towns, in his cut in funds for family planning or, for government workers, in their paychecks. The need to focus on fiscal issues has obscured some other areas where his positions are less popular, like his opposition to abortion."
Yes, the liberals are just waiting, waiting, waiting for Christie to fail.
And you've got to figure that Christie knows this; that he understands all this.
He's aware of it. But it ain't gonna change him one bit.
Pay attention, America. Watch. Listen.
Chris Christie is defining a whole new brand of vigorous leadership. This is the Real Deal.


Josh said...

What I find most impressive about Christie is that he's been able to accomplish his stated goals almost completely to the letter while minimizing the number of enemies he's making. Yes, the CWA, NJEA and other labor unions will want a piece of him. But that seems to be about it.

So many politicians give way too much in order to be able to say that they "accomplished" something. Others truly accomplish their goals, but make so many enemies in the process that they suffer politically in the long run (as was arguably the case with George Bush). Christie has somehow managed to strike that balance.

Josh said...

As for abortion and the other cultural issues, there is little that a state governor can do about them on his or her own anyway. So they tend to play less of a role in state elections than they do in Congressional and Presidential elections. If Christie continues to get the state's fiscal house in order while remaining able to avoid making lots of enemies, his views on abortion, gun control, gay marriage, etc. will be a non-issue.

Dan Cirucci said...

Josh: I agree with you on both counts.
I've seen many. many New Jersey governors come and go but very few like hristie.
I'd have to rank him right near the top -- alongside Dick Hughes and Tom Kean (both VERY effective at building bridges and both highly appealing people persons).
Of course, Kean and Hughes governed during more porpserous times and continued to increase state spending, thus contributing to the growing state government and the problems we encounter today.

Anonymous said...

I really hope Christie gets that George Norcross. Norcross has destroyed South Jersey. He is moving up to the northern part of the state and around the riverfront into Pennsylvania. This is a destructive, irresponsible man with an agenda. I hope nobody is working to help this man. He needs to go ASAP and never return.