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Christie's 2016 Comeback Attempt Begins Today

Thursday, March 06, 2014

WNYC
New Jersey Governor Chris Christie greets voters on the Asbury Park boardwalk on Memorial Day 2013. New Jersey Governor Chris Christie greets voters on the Asbury Park boardwalk on Memorial Day 2013. (Jim O'Grady/WNYC)

Updated, 12:45 pm

Hey Mr. President, "what the hell are we paying you for?"

That was among the many anti-Obama, strenuously conservative and combative lines that Gov. Chris Christie delivered today during a vital speech for him at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Maryland. Not invited to CPAC last year as quasi-punishment for his alliance with President Obama in the wake of Sandy, and wounded this year by the scandals enveloping his administration, Christie needed to come out as a flame-thrower to try to woo the core conservative base that he will need to mount a 2016 campaign for the Republican presidential nomination.

Christie, the chairman of the Republican Governors Association, praised several governors by name for their conservative principles. He noted, for example, that Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker's policies had led to a dramatic reduction in the teacher union rolls. But he also touted himself, referring to public employee benefit cuts in New Jersey, teacher tenure reform and his pro-life views. 

On abortion, Christie claimed that Republicans are more tolerant than Democrats because Democrats have never had a pro-life speaker at their convention. But, in fact, Pennsylvania Sen. Bob Casey Jr., who is pro-life, spoke to Democrats in 2008.)

Christie said Obama had shown no leadership -- "what the hell are we paying you for?" -- while declaring that Republicans should beat Democrats because, simply, "our ideas are better than their ideas." Democrats are all about "the cold hard hand of government," he said.

Christie hit the right notes for the crowd, defending the Koch brothers, who are conservative financiers, from recent attacks by Democratic Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid: "Harry Reid should get back to work and stop picking on great Americans."

He dipped into foreign policy: "We are for America being a leader in the world; we are for a strong national defense, not one that allows other countries to run us over all over the world."

And for his finale, Christie trashed the media: "We have to stop letting the media define who we are and what we stand for...The fact is that we have to take these guys on directly."

The governor left to a standing ovation. 

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Comments [6]

danny iselin from Woodbridge,NJ

I listen to him and can't help hearing Fred Flintstone cry out, "YABBA, DABBY DO!!"

Mar. 11 2014 12:16 PM

Governor Numb-nuts is in no position to blather on about competence and leadership. How pathetic.

Mar. 07 2014 09:11 AM
Peter from LI from Baldwin

It's pretty sad if this blathering buffoon is the best candidate the GOP can come up with. As a recovering republican, I still agree with a few of the party's core positions. However, I firmly believe their economic policies and positions on the government and individual liberties are ruinous. News flash Governor Christie. It's not the media that's defining your party. It's your party's ill-conceived, often inconsistent and illogical policies that are doing the dirty work for you.

Mar. 07 2014 09:05 AM

New Jersey has, for a long time, a history of an excellent school system, and teachers are a big part of the reason for that success. Certain school districts continue to struggle, not because of the greed and poor quality of their teachers, but because of the entrenched poverty that persists in areas like Camden and Newark--poverty certain to continue to have an impact on the schools in these districts if the Republicans maintain their slash and burn policies when it comes to the poor. That Christie embraces the teacher union-busting of the governor of Wisconsin and celebrates the democracy-annihilation techniques of the Koch brothers is all I need for a reason to not want this bully to be the President of the United States. Mr. Christie is an embarrassment to the people of New Jersey--I have to live with that--but I would hate to have people outside the borders of this country to have to deal with this boorish, rude man who lacks not only manners, but compassion as well.

Mar. 07 2014 09:00 AM
MCARM from New York

I want to know what Christie did with the billion dollars of federal money that was scheduled for the train tunnel which was to run between Jersey and NY. He stopped the construction and stole the money for one of his projects. That man does have a big appetite and an ever bigger ego.

Mar. 07 2014 07:25 AM
Donald from Manhattan

Christie is back to his bullying - only now it is to his president. Ever since christie came into power, he has not helped his New Jerseyites. Remember the cancellation of the third tunnel which would have helped with the overcrowded trains which need a third tunnel to get the people to New York. He did it for political purposes. I also wouldn't be too proud of governors who broke unions and went back on promises of government workers' pensions. And no mention of his people getting back at people who didn't back Christie. He not only is a bully but has bullies working for him. And he wants to be president!

Mar. 07 2014 06:46 AM

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