Skip to comments.Fringe party not Christie's cup of tea [He's no conservative, folks]
Posted on 10/05/2010 3:08:36 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet
There's a better chance of seeing Governor Christie mingling with President Obama at the private dinner reception in Cresskill on Wednesday than finding him on stage with Sarah Palin or any other Tea Party gathering, for that matter.
The pugnacious, rant-and-ramble governor may sound like a Tea Party activist from time to time, and Glen Beck may be smitten with a severe case of political man-love, but in reality Christie wants as little to do with them as possible. He prefers the high ground of the GOP establishment, perched at a safe distance from the roiling Tea Party tide.
That preference was made clear Monday, when a Christie spokesman signaled that the administration will probably not file a lawsuit to block Obama's health care reforms, a top Tea Party priority. Attorneys general in 20 other states have already done so.
"Litigation is not always the best course," said Michael Drewniak, Christie's press secretary. "We want to do what's in the best interests of New Jersey residents. That is not to say that, if conditions or circumstances warrant, we would not resort to litigation."
That answer doesn't come as a complete shock Christie showed little enthusiasm for jumping into the anti-Obamacare scrum after the president signed the historic reforms into law in March. Christie said he would calmly dispatch his attorney general and Health Department commissioner to sift through the law and wait for their recommendation.
But it was clear from his body language and tone Christie was stalling. He was letting the hot air slowly fizzle out of the Tea Party Express tires, which have had limited traction on the New Jersey landscape, anyway.
Critics, such as Steve Lonegan, president of Americans for Prosperity, the conservative group that pressed Christie to join the lawsuit with a petition signed by 10,000 people, said he was "very disappointed" and said it belies Christie's reputation as a "conservative icon." Jeffrey Weingarten, a leading Tea Party activist from Clifton, said he was "mystified," given Christie's other high-profile steps to rein in government spending.
"It is a very unpopular law," Weingarten said. "People, even now, are realizing that this is not going to drive down insurance policies."
But that fact is, the decision is consistent with Christie's avoidance of the loose-knit coalition Tea Party activists. As a candidate last year, Christie publicly disinvited Palin from joining him on the campaign trail. His warning to the GOP officials not to "paint all of Islam" with the broad brush of terrorism in their opposition to a proposed Islamic center and mosque near Ground Zero struck a careful, centrist departure from Palin and Newt Gingrich.
Christie and his surrogates also backed Delaware Senate candidate Rep. Mike Castle, the moderate Republican who was clobbered by Tea Party challenger Christine O'Donnell.
There are exceptions. Christie did headline a fund-raiser for Anna Little, the Tea Party-backed upstart who captured the GOP nomination for the 6th Congressional District contest, stunning wealthy publisher Diane Gooch in a razor-thin primary victory. Little's campaign website includes a picture of Little standing next to Christie. And Christie has also thrown a few high-profile sops to the party's right wing his cutting of $7.5 million in funding for family planning centers and other health care programs, a move cheered by antiabortion groups.
But Christie also knows that Jersey is a state whose heart beats at a moderate, tolerant rhythm and Christie is well aware that it would be politically untenable to stand in the way of a law providing the promised benefits from health reform especially when they are not being paid out of the state treasury.
The first installment of Obama's health care took effect in August, when $141 million was made available for some 21,000 people in New Jersey who have preexisting health problems like cancer or diabetes. While New Jersey law mandates coverage for these conditions, the cost can be prohibitive. Obama's reforms could stake New Jersey to increased Medicaid funding, money that any governor managing a cash-starved budget is not likely to casually dismiss.
His decision also reflects fear that the unruly, quasi-libertarian Tea Party will become the identity of the GOP establishment, or as in Castle's case, prevent the establishment-backed candidates from winning.
In that view, the Tea Party is a threat to the GOP's return to national dominance. And there is no advantage in getting too chummy with a fringe group if Christie does indeed harbor ambitions for national office.
The better play is to co-opt their anger and donor lists without committing to their cause. Dissolve their tentative structure by absorbing their anger.
Rail against public employee unions, throw politically acceptable sops their way, and bask in the glow of Glenn Beck's tributes just don't sign onto their lawsuits.
No Christie is not a onservative, but it’s still refreshing to see a Republican with some guts (I started to say testicles but that would exclude Jan Brewer who is also refreshing).
When will the rest of them learn that truth trumps lies and spin every time?
Bingo !! Very astute observation.....because that is my premise exactly. Our present welfare state is out of money and will collapse. And the failed attempts to save it are what is driving the coming revolution.
Great historical events just don't happen because people see a better way or make some intellectual determination. They happen because the existing paradigm changes. And people demand a massive shift in the way society is structured.
The mass of people in 1760 America were quite happy being British subjects. But in 15 yrs the equilibrium was changed as the British went broke from it's wars and tried to raise revenue in the colonies. And the colonists said no.
In 1850 nobody wanted Civil War but in 10 yrs the equilibrium changed when the slave states wanted to expand slavery in the new states. And the North said no.
Most Americans 5 yrs ago never questioned the existence of the safety net welfare state put into place by FDR and subsequent presidents. But in order to try to save it the equilibrium as been changed with huge spending and take overs of private businesses. And more and more Americans are saying no. The sides are being drawn up as pro and anti doing business as usual or refusing to save a dying system.
My father is a retired school teacher in New Jersey ...and he thinks Christie is plenty conservative Republican....and he isn’t happy......
I’m not sure the people calling others RINO have much sense......
I love the fact that we got someone like that as governor of a dark blue Northeastern state. It’s as good as it’s gonna get. But president? Nope!
Well, if the system is collapsing as you suggest, then you will certainly be right - and those who recognized it first will have the advantage. I just have my doubts we are really at that point yet.
And more and more Americans are saying no.
See, this is where I disagree. I do not see any fundamental shift yet in American's attitudes towards the social welfare state. I think we can look at places like CA, IL, NY and see that people are actually ferociously trying to hold on to it. I think you may fail to take into account the demographic shifts and just how powerful the Latino block is for the left. I agree white voters will increasingly shift towards the right, but quite frankly, there just aren't enough of them to overcome the minority and victim groups.
Still, you make very good points. You could be right too.
His lawyer is a close family friend....
Anyway, we will know soon enough !!
I've seen enough of him, especially his courageous stand on unions and pensions in a state like NJ, to conclude that anybody that claim's he's no conservative has a few screws loose; to put it mildly.
The defense of fundamental constitutional principles is not a
I had a feeling this guy was going to be a disappointment.
I’m with you.
But to certain deranged candidates (Lonegan in NJ, Oberweis in IL) and the cult of personality they try to build up around themselves, facts do not matter.
Like we like to say in jersey...don't bull sh*t a bull sh*tter......lol !!
This guy is doing what he is doing BECAUSE he HAS to....
Oh, he'll make it sound like a tough talking CONSERVATIVE, but aside from his grumbling on tape WHAT HAS HE DONE?
Answer.....NOT AN F'IN THING (except support fellow RINOS that is).....
so they're not perfect candidates?....no one is...no one will ever be..not Mother Theresa and not the great Ronald Reagan...
I appreciate strong candidates and I'll accept their differences and cheer the ones I support....
live together or die alone....
I'll tell you one thing....this all perfect candidate that some of you want...one who agrees with everything you believe in....
that candidate is a MYTH!