Thursday, February 26, 2015


Chris Christie is struggling in presidential polls, and Gail Collins thiks she knows why:
Chris Christie is political toast.

Cause of his charred presidential prospects: an unreformed state pension system. I know that’s disappointing. Not nearly as exciting as the political near-death experiences that went before. We were hoping the next disaster would be something like Governor Yells at Elmo. Or a reprise of the day he chased a guy down the boardwalk while waving an ice cream cone, this time maybe featuring Tom Hanks or Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
No, those wouldn't hurt him. Yelling at Elmo would probably endear Christie to GOP-base voters who think public broadcasting should be defunded, even if that threatens Sesame Street. And certainly those voters liked the Chris Christie who used to go medieval on random hecklers.

It's not the pension problem that's doing him in. Look at the recent GOP primary polls collected by HuffPost Pollster (go to the link for the full list and other candidates' numbers).

Christie regularly scored in double digits, enough to put him in the top tier in a crowded field, right through the summer of 2014. (Earlier numbers are at the link.)

Then what happened? Well, several things. The first thing is that Mitt Romney happened. He started talking seriously about running for president -- and he immediately shot up in the polls, while Christie sunk to single digits. If you're one of the remaining Republican voters who want a nominee who's a bit to the left of the extreme right, it's quite possible that you dumped Christie for Romney around that time. (The only poll since October in which Christie has scored in double digits was one that didn't include Romney.)

At the same time, Jeb Bush started making serious moves, and he helped split the not-completely-wingnutty vote. More important, Ben Carson's name began to be added to pollsters' candidate lists. Mike Huckabee began to make moves. And Scott Walker got a wave of publicity, all of it positive as far as most Republicans are concerned.

Christie's appeal in the GOP falls into two categories: he's not on the extreme right (which is a good thing to some voters) and he's been on Fox News a lot infuriating liberals. But Mitt and Jeb took some of his support in the former category, and Walker, Carson, and Huckabee have really cut into his support among voters for whom the latter is extremely important.

That was Christie's big mistake: He spent 2014 traveling the country collecting chits as head of the Republican Governors Association, rather than being seen on Fox attacking union teachers and other right-wing Antichrists. He doesn't seem like an obvious president -- he's too young and jumpy and he isn't a mature alpha male like Romney or Bush, which matters to a few GOP voters -- so when he failed to tap into the other source of his appeal, namely his ability to annoy and needle Fox viewers' mortal enemies, he lost even more ground, to Carson and Walker.

Christie seems toothless right now. He doesn't have liberals and Democrats on the defensive. Republicans think that we think he's a joke; by contrast, they think (at least right now) that we fear Walker (and, to a lesser extent, Carson).

Romney aggressively attacked Obama throughout 2014, and sometimes got under Democrats' skin -- that's a big reason why he polled well while he was flirting with a run. Christie should have done what Romney did. If he doesn't have us on the defensive, he's got nothing.


Victor said...

The whole point of being conservative, is to piss-off the liberals.

Christie's demise began when he hugged Obama after the hurricane. That took some of the angry-bully magic away from him.

And then, like you said, Steve, he was out in the states already campaigning, instead of sealing his brand on FOX and Rush.

About angry conservatism, as usual, John Stewart put it best in this segment:
"How do you poison a cyanided factory:"

Ten Bears said...

How anyone thought that fat fuck was a viable candidate is beyond this Mad Scientist. Anyone with half a brain could see that anyone that unhealthy is capable of nothing more than parroting the scripted talking points handed down from the Ministry of Propaganda.

Funny how it only bullies those who won't fight back.

Yes, "it". It isn't human. It is less than human.

Victor said...

Ten Bears,
A lot of times I value what you write.
But sometimes...

Christie IS human.
As am I.
As are you.
As is the worst serial killer.

It's different degrees of greed, rationality, empathy, compassion, sociopathy, and psychopathy that differentiates one of us from another.

Don't dehumanize the Reich-Wingers.

To say they're not human, is to give them some degree of cover for acting like sociopaths and psychopaths.
"See, the Libtards think I'm inhuman - but I'm the same as you, my base!"

You only endear them more to their crazy Christian base.

Leave the dehumanizing to the conservatives.

FSM knows, they do enough of it.
They dehumanize women, minorities, gays, non-Christians, etc...
And some of them even want to exterminate those whose opinions differ from theirs.

Like with trolls - leave the trolls to trolls; and leave the dehumanizing/extermination talk to conservatives, to talk to one another about dehumanizing/exterminating those that they don't like.

Labeling by our side, of a 'him" a "her" an "it," only gives the MSM's "BOTH SIDES!" chorus, some more ammo.

We are different from them.
But, we're all still human!


Ten Bears said...

Funny how it only bullies those who don't fight back.

Victor said...

Gandhi and MLK Jr. proved that you don't need bullying back, and/or violence, to defeat the bullies.

Bullying back just gives the MSM more evidence for their, "See, both sides do it," meme and mantra.

That's just my opinion.

And, FSM knows that I haven't always turned the other cheek - just most times.

Yastreblyansky said...

It would have been really nice if Christie could have been brought down by the pension fiasco--a serious and criminal policy fuckup aimed at middle class people that illustrates everything that's wrong with conservatism. Or by his evident corruption. Or anything other than his obnoxious personality and comical appearance. I mean, I'm pleased that it's clear he'll never be president, of course, but it would be so nice if people knew why it would have been bad for our country and could be relied on not to vote for J.E.B. Bush or Scott Walker either.