THE WEASEL WORDS THAT TELL US CHRISTIE REALLY WANTS TO BE VP
The main point of this story from The Hill is that Chris Christie, a Mitt Romney supporter and surrogate, went on Meet the Press and insulted Newt Gingrich ("This is a guy that's had a very difficult career at times and has been an embarrassment to the party") -- despite the fact that Gingrich appeared on the same Meet the Press broadcast, and despite the fact that Gingrich could be the presidential nominee of Christie's party. (The latter suggests to me that, as I've said before, the GOP establishment really might not back Gingrich if he's the nominee, treating him the way the party treated David Duke when he made it to the general election in the Louisiana governor's race years ago. The party might try to secure the Americans Elect line for an establishment Republican instead.)
But beyond that, there's a quote from Christie that's interesting if you think the man he's endorsed, Mitt Romney, is still a likely GOP nominee, although the Hill reporter draws exactly the wrong conclusion:
In the same interview Christie shot down the possibility of joining Romney on the Republican presidential ticket if the former Massachusetts governor won the nomination. He said he would listen if Romney offered him the job but, as of now, he plans to stick in his current job....
"I absolutely believe that come November 2012 I'm going to be governor of New Jersey," Christie said.
Excuse me, but that's a very clever weasel-word answer, for the simple reason that Christie's still going to be governor of New Jersey in November 2012 even if he's on the ticket and it wins, because he wouldn't be sworn in as VP until January 2013.
Say what you will about Christie, he's not Rick Perry -- I'm sure he knows exactly what he's saying when he says that. So, yeah, he wants it.
And if you doubt that, go to the transcript:
GOV. CHRISTIE: ... Now as for the vice presidency, let me say again, I want to be governor of New Jersey. I ran to be governor of New Jersey. I absolutely believe that come November 2012 I'm going to be governor of New Jersey and not in any other office. The fact of the matter is, if Governor Romney, who's going to be our nominee, picked up the phone and called me to talk about this, I love my country enough and I love my party enough to listen, but in the end, David, if you were a betting guy--and I know you are, I know you are, David. If you're a betting guy, you should bet Chris Christie being the governor of New Jersey in November 2012.
Well, I'd take that bet, just as I would have taken a bet that Joe Biden would still be the senior senator from Delaware in November 2008 -- just not two months later.
I think Christie's at the top of Romney's short list -- or he's trying to get there.
By the way, the exchange (with interviewer David Gregory) gets a bit sickening:
MR. GREGORY: But you said once, who would want me as a number two?
GOV. CHRISTIE: Well, I still feel that way.
MR. GREGORY: But you'd be a good vice president, wouldn't you?
GOV. CHRISTIE: Oh, listen, I think that certain personalities...
MR. GREGORY: Not to appeal to your ego or anything.
GOV. CHRISTIE: No, listen...
MR. GREGORY: I'm saying you'd be wonderful, wouldn't you?
"You'd be wonderful"? There's your liberal media, folks. I mean, yeah, he smiles when he says this -- watch it in the clip at about 9:00 -- but you tell me whether he's really joking.