New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, the rotund and pugnacious spokesman for his own unique brand of Republicanism, recently announced that he had undergone gastric-band surgery in an effort to lose weight.
Governor Christie, who once claimed, “I’m basically the healthiest fat guy you’ve ever seen in your life,” had long-denied that his weight had anything to do with anything – especially his political future.
Christie refused to talk numbers during the discussion of his surgery, but rumor has it that he has shed forty pounds and feels great.
The Governor claims that his weight loss surgery has nothing to do with a possible run for President, saying, “I know it sounds crazy to say that running for president is minor, but in the grand scheme of things, it was looking at Mary Pat and the kids and going, ‘I have to do this for them, even if I don’t give a crap about myself.’”
We take Governor Christie at his word on the possible relationship between his weight loss surgery and a potential run for the White House, because we don’t think Christie’s obesity was his greatest handicap – after all he’s a popular Governor heavily touted to easily win re-election.
What would weigh him down in the Republican primaries is not his body size, but his positions or total lack of a record on a variety of issues that are part of the conservative agenda.
Along with the big gaps in his record, what concerns us more than anything is Governor Christie’s constant references to “reaching across the aisle” and compromising with Democrats.
We think of the idea that everything should be subject to compromise as Washington, DC’s original sin.
We tend to see it as a cause for celebration when our elected officials actually stand-up for conservative principles, despite the political pressure to compromise the plain language of the Constitution or increase spending.
While Governor Christie’s willingness to take on public employee unions and big spending state legislators of both parties was a good sign, Christie’s conservative bona fides on a variety of issues that are determinative in Republican Primaries have yet to be vetted and tested.
For example, conservatives should also demand answers from Governor Christie on his support for gun control, his abysmal record of prosecuting immigration cases when he was U.S. Attorney, his appointment of an Islamist to the New Jersey Supreme Court, his views on global warming and the green agenda, why he campaigned for RINO Mike Castle, why he was not a party to the Obamacare litigation, and where he stands on a host of issues that simply haven’t come up in the time he’s occupied the New Jersey Governor’s mansion.
Christie’s famously combative personality and tough guy ripostes to hecklers and hostile media questions no doubt appeal to those who are unhappy with Republican spinelessness in the face of a hostile media. It remains to be seen, however, whether Jersey tough will play well in the Midwest and South where – at least in public – politics is more genteel.
Chris Christie may be a brawler getting down to fighting trim, but if his weight loss surgery is part of a plan to run for President, he needs to shed his liberal positions along with the pounds.