So you want to vote for Chris Christie on November 5th?

After Sandy, just a year ago, I thought it was super-cool that Governor Christie wore his fleece and hugged stood next to President Obama and showed concern for residents who had had their lives upended and submerged and interrupted. And admittedly, I was amused by Chris Christie’s personality — even, sadly, when he was spouting ideals that grate against my moral fiber.

Then I went to a Christie Town Hall in Montville (because he doesn’t take constituent meetings, town halls are more “for the people” and all). And he was really offensive when it came to comparing urban and suburban areas. See my tweets here. I mean, things like this about Montville-type towns paying too much already, juxtaposed with this about Abbott schools being wasteful. And, with hindsight and recent news, this chilling comment about how he wants to change the NJ Supreme Court in order to affect change in Abbott districts is even more disturbing. Can you say CODED LANGUAGE? (Find out what Abbott Districts are.) You should know that the Montville Town Hall was not close to what anyone would call ethnically or racially diverse.

A month later, in Paterson, I attended another Governor Christie Town Hall. Over 700 people filled the pews. It was more diverse than the Montville district, but most of the audience was African-American. This was the pseudo-infamous Town Hall where Christie responded to an audience member shouting out “Fix the Public Schools!” by saying “Yeah, I hear you boy, I hear you.” Somehow, my tweet about the audience holding its breath and then deciding to give Christie the benefit of the doubt has disappeared. Hmm. Here are the other tweets from that town hall. You can see the exchange here to judge for yourself. Anyway, all this to say that the Paterson school district is one of 31 Abbott Districts. So, this is a district that Christie said was “wasteful” to the Montville Town Hall. Odd then that several audience members, including a Board of Education member, asked that the state release Paterson from state control.

After attending these two very different Town Halls, both times as an outsider, I felt dirty. The Governor’s attitude was one of smugness and “wink, wink” at Montville. In Paterson, his behavior was thick with condescension and self-satisfaction. And he actually TOLD the audience in Paterson that they use up more taxes than they pay; this after telling Montville residents that they pay too much. Completely disregarding the realities and hardships of one group while pooh-poohing the privilege of the other.

But we oughtn’t to choose or not choose a Governor on an elitist attitude or a supercilious personality. Instead, consider the words of my friend Nicola below — printed with permission.

Planning to vote for Gov. Christie on Nov. 5?

Gov. Christie vetoed common sense gun legislation that would expand background checks and require a gun safety training course for gun owners that would help keep guns out of children’s hands. He completely reversed his stance and stood with the gun lobby to veto a bill to ban .50 caliber rifles capable of taking down a helicopter.

Gov. Christie vetoed marriage equality legislation — and while New Jersey is now proudly (and rightly) a marriage equality state, it is in spite of his actions, not because of them.

And if you still have fuzzy feelings remembering Gov. Christie tour the shore with President Obama last year, you should know that there are a lot of concerns regarding his actions regarding Sandy recovery too…

Gov. Christie spent millions more to hire a PR company that would feature the Governor prominently in NJ tourism ads. And the Christie administration has been invited and has declined to attend all four legislative hearings on Hurricane Sandy.

Think he is an accessible, tell-it-like-it-is guy? Well, then why has he refused to answer questions regarding his 6pm Friday night vetoes on gun legislation that over 80% of residents want?

Oh, and did you know that for the past 5 weeks, Gov. Christie has refused to allow any press questions at over 30 public appearances? Christie may not be a Ted Cruz or Michelle Bachmann, but he isn’t exactly a moderate and his focus right now surely isn’t on Jersey.

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About That Unique* Weblog

Adjusting to the car culture, dealing with leaving a career I love, and spouting off along the way.
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23 Responses to So you want to vote for Chris Christie on November 5th?

  1. Natalie DeYoung says:

    Ick, what a tool. Didn’t like him before, certainly don’t like him after reading this.

    • I try to believe that most people are good. But if someone dismisses an entire section of the population he is supposed to be working FOR as – ultimately – a waste, I can’t keep thinking that way. Sniff.

  2. My husband is a builder. He was at a job at the shore the other day and happened upon Gov. Christie giving a speech – the beginnings of his campaign for 2016 we assume. Yes, he’s got a lot to say about being “for the people” and bipartisanship and that’s all good. But there are so many other things that scare the bejeezuz out of me about this guy. He’s selling his cult of personality right now, but exactly; it’s where he stands on things like the gun lobby and gay marriage that are among the big red flags for me. I’m not convinced.

    • It’s definitely a cult of personality — which I get! I know first hand how tough it is to pay attention to ALL the issues — especially when they don’t impact me directly. He is not for most NJ residents. And lots of Sandy-impacted residents also now know this, unfortunately.

  3. Dana says:

    I only have impressions of Christie from snippets I’ve seen on the news, but I’m not crazy about him. Just a gut feeling, but it seems from your more educated opinion it’s accurate.

  4. I also kind of liked him in the few days after Sandy when he railed against politics in those moments, lived in his navy blue fleece, and toured the shore with the president. But, watching him one year later, I can’t help but think that the whole thing was a little bit of a show. Thanks for writing this. I don’t vote in NJ, but it’s nice to hear the perspective of the people who do.

  5. What a d-bag. That’s what is going through my mind when I see him interviewed and read about him (here and in the papers). I don’t come from a state (IL) with a history of stellar governors. They’re all pretenders. Ours have been thieves.

    • I don’t think he’s a BAD person. I think he lives in a bubble of privilege and has swallowed the belief that money = virtue. I’m sure he loves his kids and cares about his (immediate) neighbors. But he doesn’t seem to have empathy for the institutionalized roadblocks keeping so many from achieving success.

  6. Karen says:

    Smart, sassy, well-written piece.

    I love what you said in the above comment: “I think he lives in a bubble of privilege” – perfect.

  7. Exactly how I feel. He is smug, condescending and harmful. He even said that if one of his children was gay, he would tell them “sorry, but you don’t deserve to marry the one you love. Hateful man.

    • Even after all the disappointing policies, I was floored when he CHALLENGED the court ruling about marriage equality. That’s when I knew for sure that he wasn’t running for NJ Governor; he was running for POTUS.

  8. It just breaks my “Jersey Girl” heart that so many of my fellow citizens have been snookered. In the end, we get what we deserve. Shame on us.

  9. Jack Kur says:

    Funny but I am looking at it from the other end. I am thinking he is doing what he can to distance himself from conservatives. Look what he just did with the Senator special election. Could have saved millions by appointing someone like most Govs do in cases like this. He knew that Booker would get in and let him. He is – a true NJ Republican or as he would be called in any other state – a RINO.

    • Well, he is called a RINO by far-Right extremists, so I suppose he has the best of both worlds.

      My impression of his decision not to appoint was because he wants to push things into the “people’s” hands to avoid decisions that might be unpopular with any of the many sides to NJ politics. And clearly, Christie’s focus is not on saving money or he would have avoided a special election by having the Senate vote on November 5th. And come on now, endorsing Lonegan was an attempt to distance himself from conservatives?

      Not buying it. He’s prepping for a POTUS run; he’s about to take even more of a right turn.

  10. Pingback: TGIF News Roundup & Open Thread for Nov. 1, 2013 - United Americans

  11. Stacey says:

    NJ already requires back ground checks to get an ID and purchase a gun – so saying that he vetoed a bill is not fair because it is already a standard issue. Also he asked for the people not the government to rule on gay marriage, which is now legal in NJ.

    • Hi Stacey,

      Background Check legislation is a federal bill, so a governor does not have the ability to veto that. The references to “common sense gun legislation” that Christie vetoed is about state bills specific to NJ. You can read about those here: http://bit.ly/146oISE

      And he didn’t just “ask for the people” to vote on marriage equality, he vetoed legislation sent to his desk (see here: http://nyti.ms/Ssa1TY), and when the NJ Supreme Court refused to delay weddings during the appeal that his administration made, he backed down because he realized it was a battle he couldn’t win. However, he was willing to spend state monies to keep NJ residents from exercising their civil rights. It speaks to his values, his fiscal responsibility, and his lack of working for ALL New Jerseyans.

  12. Jay Gee says:

    Don’t forget the PIGS! Following the governor’s veto, many Jersey folks who had been tracking the ban on gestation crates that was passed this summer threw their hands up and said, “well, he MUST be looking at a presidential run” (or words to that effect). There are an awful lot of gestation crates in Iowa. Politico noticed too. http://www.politico.com/story/2013/10/chris-christie-new-jersey-governor-iowa-2016-elections-republicans-99120.html

    • Ugh. There are so many crinkles and ugly details under the surface of his facade. Since writing this, there have been the education, Sandy, and now animal welfare issues on which he has chosen the conservative and opaque route.

      Thanks for sharing this.

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