On Friday morning, Gov. Chris Christie (R-NJ) may have had the run-in that finally ends his presidential aspirations: he got into a verbal sparring match with Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi, star of MTV’s Jersey Shore. Both Christie and Snooki had just appeared on NBC’s Today show – a devastating critique of our culture in and of itself – but then they got into a heated conversation. After the conversation, Snooki tweeted, “Getting told why we are bad for jersey. Amazing.”
Apparently, Snooki, wearing a midriff-baring shirt, told Christie, “I just wanted to meet you, and just, hope you start to like us.” Christie shook her hand and said, “Good to meet you,” then left. Snooki turned to the camera: “He just doesn’t like us.”
Christie has every reason not to like Jersey Shore. The show, which ended its six-season run last year, features a bunch of low-IQ morons drinking and having promiscuous sex. Snooki, Christie’s bête noire, supposedly wants to be a veterinary technician, but is far more well-known for her sexual license and for being punched by a gym teacher on one episode (the punch was blacked out of the show, but went viral on the internet). During season 5 of the show, she earned $150,000 per episode. She has a child out of wedlock with Jionni LaValle. In 2011, she pulled down $32,000 to speak at Rutgers University and told students, “Study hard, party harder.” She’s also been in trouble with the police.
But there’s no way for Christie to win a confrontation with Snooki. She’s wildly popular: she has 6.3 million Twitter followers, compared with 370,000 for Christie. She’s supposedly attractive, at least in a trashy way. And she’s known for being a lightweight.
Christie, by contrast, is a polarizing political figure masquerading as a pop culture one. The media has evidenced its love for Christie ever since Christie shook up the presidential race by taking President Obama for a spin around the wreckage of Hurricane Sandy the week before the election. Since then, Christie has appeared on Saturday Night Live, The Late Show with David Letterman, Extra!, The Daily Show, and Today. Inside Edition covered his press conference about his lap band surgery. He’s hosted Jon Bon Jovi for a bill signing. And Snooki – yes, the same one – tweeted that she wanted to work out with him.
But when it comes to the conflict between a Republican wannabe celeb and a bubbleheaded nincompoop on MTV, the choice is clear: the bubblehead wins. That’s because the same machine Christie has used for months to build his credibility with the American public can tear him down in an instant. That’s the magic of Hollywood: if they can make a hero of Snooki, they can make a villain of Christie.
And that’s the reason Republicans keep losing presidential races: they don’t understand that Hollywood is like Sauron’s ring – it cannot be wielded by any conservative. Hollywood may offer the allure of love, the illusion of popularity. But both love and popularity will be ripped away the moment it becomes convenient.
This may not be the critical moment for Governor Christie. The media may wait until he wins the Republican nomination in 2016. But the fact that Christie will become the subject of late-night jokes, that he will be bashed about in the media for daring not to love Snooki, and that he will always come out on the short end of the stick with Hollywood, shows that it’s only a matter of time before Christie falls to the power of the ring, and it destroys him.
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