Don’t be fooled by all the high poll numbers for Christie. After helping Obama, he’s popular even among some Democrats. But the popularity of any Republican with Democrats is only a temporary phenomenon that does not extend past the first time he runs for president.
John McCain, Mitt Romney and even Sarah Palin were all once reasonably popular among some Democrats and even the media as reformers who weren’t tied to a partisan agenda. All that went away 5 seconds after they challenged Obama. Christie gets praised now, but the moment he runs against Hillary, all the people now saying that they wish more Republicans were like Christie will be depicting him as an extreme extremist who represents the extreme extremism of a Republican Party that has long ago left behind moderates like Goldwater and Reagan.
Even now, cocooned by enthusiastic liberals in the media, Christie still couldn’t even beat Hillary in his own state.
The New Jersey governor has the highest approval rating, 74 percent, in Quinnipiac University’s 17 years of polling the Garden State. Only 22 percent disapprove of his job performance. Seventy-one percent of voters believe Christie deserves reelection this year, including 48 percent of Democrats. He leads Democratic challenger Barbara Buono, 62 percent to 25 percent.
But in a potential 2016 matchup with former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, the Garden State won’t stand by its man. Forty-nine percent would pick Clinton, and 45 percent would vote for Christie. While Christie is popular with the state’s Democrats, that support melts away in a matchup with Clinton. A full 86 percent would back her.
Christie got a free ride to another term as Governor of New Jersey after his clammy embrace of Obama. Senator Lautenberg was shoved aside to make way for Cory Booker to avoid a bruising fight between Booker and Christie. Christie gets to go on talk shows and yuk it up, while plenty of Sandy victims are still living in tents. But the media will not give any Republican an even break when it comes to a national election.
The media will sometimes take it easy on liberal Republicans as a strategic maneuver, but it will ruthlessly go after any Republican who forgets his place and tries to head for the White House.