Wednesday, August 14, 2013


This morning, Jennifer Rubin explained why she believes "Chris Christie should thank Sarah Palin":
... [A] gift with a big red ribbon arrived in the form Sarah Palin's pronouncement that Christie has too much shtick -- if winning a blue state overwhelmingly is shtick, perhaps the whole party needs more of it -- and is a "big government" Republican.... Palin, even among conservatives, and even among hard-line conservatives, is a bit of a joke and not a serious person. She ... serves as sort of a reverse compass for political judgment. Whichever way she points, it's a good idea to go in the opposite direction. When she declares she will "Stand with Rand," she is solidifying Paul as the not-serious candidate and casting Christie in the role of the grown up.

Christie hardly needs Rand Paul and Sarah Palin to seem like a grown up. He, along with Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, if he decides to run, will have the benefit of being a successful executive with a record of success. Add his role in Hurricane Sandy recovery, and you have an impressive leader....

It isn't clear Christie is going to run.... But in the "better to be lucky than good" department, it sure helps to have the nutty wing of the party go after him.
I agree that, in general, Sarah Palin is a laughingstock. However, there's one group of voters that doesn't consider her one: Republicans. They've mostly stopped rooting for her to run for anything, but now that she seems settled into her role as a gadfly, they like her again.

It's hard finding an A-to-A comparison, but here are some poll numbers from YouGov on Chris Christie's favorability among Republicans. These are from a couple of weeks ago (PDF):
Very favorable: 15%
Somewhat favorable: 33%
Total favorable: 48%

Somewhat unfavorable: 25%
Very unfavorable: 13%
Total unfavorable: 38%
Now, here are June YouGov numbers for Sarah Palin (PDF):
Very favorable: 34%
Somewhat favorable: 39%
Total favorable: 73%

Somewhat unfavorable: 12%
Very unfavorable: 8%
Total unfavorable: 20%
Republicans like Sarah Palin a hell of a lot more than they like Chris Christie.

(If you care, Palin's overall rating in that poll is 37% favorable, 52% unfavorable; Christie's is 42% favorable, 32% unfavorable. Regarding Christie, 26% have no opinion -- we in the Northeast Corridor forget that Christie isn't a household name nationwide.)

I don't know what's going to happen in the GOP between now and 2016. It's possible that Chris Christie will tack relentlessly to the right starting ten minutes after he's reelected this November, which will allow him to dominate the 2016 GOP presidential primaries. But whatever happens, I see no reason to believe that moderation and establishmentarianism will prevail. I think the inmates have picked the locks and now run the Republican asylum. If you want that nomination, I think you're going to have to get right with Palin.


Victor said...

I hate to put it this way, but it's appropriate when we're talking about the Conservative base - I don't see how they can get over seeing Christie hugging that "tar-baby," President Obama.

They can forgive a lot of things, and he can point to his hatred of choo-choo trains and tunnels, and his union-busting, and whatever he'll do if, rather, when, he's reelected, to tack back to the hard right - but NOT THAT!!!

All their base will remember, was he didn't spit in Obama's eye, and decline Federal money - oh, and he put an EEEEEEEEBIL MOOZLUM on the NJ court.

That's two HUUUUUUUUGE strikes!

Tom Hilton said...

I couldn't get this phrasing from Rubin: "a successful executive with a record of success". I think what she meant to say was "a successful executive who has successfully succeeded in accumulating a successful record of success".

The New York Crank said...

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I think that no morbidly obese man, with the exception of William Howard Taft, has ever been elected president.

So me worry? Not with that surgically inserted lap band evidently doing so little. If you want to help out Democrats in the coming presidential election, get people to show up at all Christie's gubernatorial campaign events and demand that he sample the pizza, the fried chicken, the hot dogs, and the ice cream. Not just little nibbles. We want big bites.

Let's make the campaign chant of the crowds: "Eat it, Christie!"

Very crankily yours,
The New York Crank

Steve M. said...

I think Christie's health would be at risk from a long campaign, but, y'know, he's roughly the same size as a lot of Americans these days.

Abanterer said...

He's not too far out of mine, tell you what. But, that's an image thing, and while the GOP prefers Fit White Hairdos, it also tried to elect McCain once upon a time. I don't think his weight will be held against him, as long as he doesn't take his shirt off, Putin style.

Philo Vaihinger said...

Garfield? (Obese presidents).

Victor said...

Hey, Steve, watch it!
I resemble that remark.
Not quite as big, thankfully.