The New York Times Monday attempted to take down the man that it, and the left-wing media, has built up to be the most hopeful Republican White House hopeful since Maverick McCain — New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie.
The governor, a Republican now preparing a run for president, shot to national prominence as a cheese-steak-on-the-boardwalk Everyman who bluntly preached transparency and austerity as the antidote to bloated state budgets. But throughout his career in public service, Mr. Christie has indulged a taste that runs more toward Champagne at the Four Seasons.
He has also quietly let others pay the bills.
Naturally, if you’re going to attack a Republican, it must be on moral grounds, since only Republicans are susceptible to charges of hypocrisy.
Despite the overwhelming evidence that Gov. Christie has treated himself like royalty on the public dime, and has allowed royalty to treat him like royalty (his buddy, the lately-late King Abdullah, picked up his family-travel tab), I feel compelled to defend Gov. Christie against aspersions designed to thrust him from the GOP field, perhaps even forcing him to run as a Democrat.
There’s a perfectly reasonable, even praise-worthy, explanation for the international charter flights with family, 5-star hotels, stadium box seats next to team owners, and the $236 four-mile car rides, as well as for the celebrity leg-humping with Bono, Jamie Foxx, Howard Stern and others.
Think about it: A main complaint about Barack Obama is that he wasn’t prepared to be president. But 18 months before the presidential election, Gov. Christie has done much to ready himself to live in a palace, fly private charter, eat the fat and drink the sweet, and, as he reportedly says, “squeeze all the juice out of the orange.” All of this he does either at public expense, or, more frequently, through the generosity of well-connected, well-heeled friends. Chris Christie has that je ne sais quoi that voters seek — he already “looks presidential.”
In addition to assiduously becoming accustomed to the presidential lifestyle, Gov. Christie has also set an example for millions of Americans. He’s a solid conservative who is prudent with his own money, and will not splurge on luxury unless it’s fully paid for by others.
To quote the economist John Cougar Mellencamp: “Ain’t that America, home of the free?”
Furthermore, Christie explains that he relishes the foreign travel “experiences and exposures, especially for my kids,” as he dabs a drop of orange juice from his chin. Everyone loves a president who understands that everything we do is “for the children.”
As for the celebrities, we all know they they’re the most frequent visitors to the White House, so it’s good that Gov. Christie gets to know them now. On Day One, he’ll already have a prioritized list for the Lincoln bedroom.
I would venture to say that no Republican candidate is better prepared than Chris Christie to accept the mantle of responsibility, along with the scepter and the diadem.
Of course, I could be wrong. We’ll have to wait for future New York Times stories about the other candidates to know for sure.