I’ve made no secret about my uneasiness at the prospect of Barack Obama winning a second term in the White House. Granted, the last few weeks have seen the Romney campaign’s momentum on the upswing. Things were looking pretty good.
That is until the arrival of Hurricane Sandy. The storm has awarded the President with a golden opportunity…to APPEAR ‘Presidential’. Despite ‘appear’ being the operative word here, that’s exactly what Mr. Obama did
on Wednesday with New Jersey governor, Chris Christie. Politics aside? I don’t think so! Not with THIS Administration! Governor Christie all but through his support behind an Obama second term, practically gushing over the President’s directives of federal aid for storm ravaged New Jersey. You might view my cynicism as uncalled for. But, I’ve been in the same situation the people of the northeast are facing. Only difference is, if I recall correctly, FEMA didn’t exist in 1979. But, that’s beside the point. President Obama knew the political capital to be gained. Though, in this case, you might call it a perk for actually doing his job. A job he has failed miserably at for nearly four years. And don’t doubt the fact that the Obama administration weighs EVERY, SINGLE move through the prism of how it may benefit the President. The situation is NOT the priority. The priority is what can be gained from it.
Nevertheless, Mr. Obama’s presence on the Jersey shore may very well play as the determining factor for his re-election. Those so called ‘undecideds’ will view him as a caring, concerned leader. The reality being what we’ve seen since his inauguration in January 2009. Unfortunately, Governor Christie’s emotional stance in this didn’t help.
Seems I’m not the only one with this view….
THE CHRIS CHRISTIE – BARACK OBAMA LOVE FEST, AN OCTOBER SURPRISE – Powerline Blog
Am I the only Republican who is shaking his head over the effusive praise Chris Christie is showering on President Obama in connection with the federal response to Hurricane Sandy? As Politico reports, Obama and Christie “cemented their new-found mutual admiration society on Wednesday, as the men gushed with praise for one another while touring damage from Hurricane Sandy on the devastated Jersey Shore.” According to Politico, in the course of a press statement and an earlier appearance at a nearby storm shelter, Christie publicly thanked Obama at least six times for his dedication to getting help and supplies to the Garden State.
Among Christie’s statements praising Obama was this:
I’m pleased to report that he has sprung into action to help get us those things immediately. It’s been a great working relationship to make sure that were doing the job people elected us to do. I cannot thank the president enough.
Christie’s first obligation is to New Jersey, of course. So it’s natural that he wants to stay on Obama’s good side in this time of crisis. And it would inappropriate, in any case, not to thank Obama for helping, even though doing so is (a) the president’s job and (b) politically wise.
But I don’t see the need, from the standpoint of helping New Jersey, to lavish so much praise on the president. Obama is going to try to demonstrate concern and leadership in responding to the hurricane whether Christie becomes his buddy or not.
Meanwhile, the Christie-Obama love fest helps the president cast himself in a bipartisan light that voters across the country will likely find appealing, but which is completely out of character for Obama. Indeed, Christie appears to be the first Republican with whom Obama has worked smoothly as president. No wonder the hysterical, shrieking partisan Democrat Jennifer Granholm has declared Christie her new favorite Republican.
If Christie has an interest in bonding with Obama, it is his own interest, not New Jersey’s. He is up for reelection next year, although he has not said yet whether he will be a candidate. Obama’s praise and the image of the two working together would no doubt be helpful to Christie in a Democratic state that Obama will carry easily next week.
I don’t say that Christie’s conduct is motivated by political calculation, though. Until Hurricane Sandy, he had been one of Obama’s fiercest critics. More likely, Christie thinks he’s doing the right thing by displaying the spirit of bipartisanship during a crisis.
No one wants Christie to act like a partisan during a natural disaster. But Christie could be non-partisan and gracious without, on the eve of a critically important national election, indulging in a love fest with a president whose overall performance he has consistently denounced.