by Robert Arvay
After speaking with my younger brother, I have had to admit that he may be smarter than me, at least about this. He perceives that New Jersey Governor Chris Christie will be the presidential nominee on the Democrat ticket.
If you do not closely follow news about state governors, it may not surprise you that Charlie Crist, former Republican governor of Florida, is running once again for his old office. What may surprise you is that he is now running as a Democrat. In 2010, Crist sought the Republican nomination for the US Senate — and failed. He failed because he had underestimated how badly he had ruined his credibility by literally embracing Barack Obama during a visit by the president, an embrace that he thought would endear him to moderates and independents. Crist discovered his mistake when he lost the Republican nomination for US Senator to Marco Rubio, who ran as a TEA Party favorite, and went on to defeat Democrat nominee Kendrick Meek in the general election.
The campaign had its strange moments. Before the primary election was held, Crist had publicly (but hesitantly) promised to support the Republican nominee, whomever that might be. It turned out that the promise depended on the definition of “whomever.” Apparently, it means, “Charlie Crist.”
When the nominee was not Crist, he went back on his promise, and ran for the senate as an Independent. Then, in a strange twist, Crist somehow persuaded Bill Clinton to ask Democrat Meek to withdraw from the race, so as to open the way for Crist to get the Democrat vote. Meek refused to withdraw, ran and as it turned out, Rubio won.
Crist is now seeking the Democrat nomination for governor, his third political identity in as many elections. Libertarian Party —watch out. You may be Crist’s next victim.
Governor Chris Christie has been positioning himself more carefully than Crist did. His move to the left is arguably far more open and honest than was Crist’s. Chris (it’s hard to keep the names straight—Chris, Christie, Crist) Christie has put a lot of daylight between himself and the TEA Party, and has publicly spoken out against conservative Senators Rand Paul and Ted Cruz, among others. He refused to appoint a Republican as US Senator from New Jersey when the seat came open, a very rare move by any governor of any party. The seat then was won in an election by Democrat Cory Booker, giving a clear signal to the Democrat Party that he is not their ardent foe.
Christie’s strategy seems to be to, perhaps not quite literally, win the nominations of both major parties for the presidency. If he runs as a Republican, he will likely forfeit much of the good will he has lately sought from the Democrat Party. After all, as Christie well knows, Democrats have a way of taking all they can get, and then biting the hand that fed them. By openly switching parties, at the last possible moment, but not too late, Christie can capitalize on at least some of that good will, while at the same time, maintaining most of his support from Republicans.
The one major obstacle that Christie will have to overcome is Hillary Clinton, and perhaps more formidably, her husband Bill. (Okay, that’s two… Okay, one and a half.)
That obstacle may not be quite the mountain that at first it seems. If Christie can win the Obama camp over to his side (and he has indeed garnered some bona fides from them), he may be able to benefit from the not-so-subtle enmity between the Obamas and the Clintons.
That will make for some high political drama. The only reason that Hillary never became president is Barack Obama, who politically speaking came out of nowhere, a pardon the expression, dark horse candidate with utterly zero qualifications to hold the office. For Hillary, to have lost to a Kennedy or a Rockefeller would have been far less humiliating. To have lost to a nobody must have made her see red to this day.
Hillary no doubt made some deals with Obama. Had she not, she could have been a monkey wrench in the gears of the 2008 Obama campaign, a wrench that conceivably could have made McCain the winner. It must have taken a promise of far more than the senior cabinet seat to assuage her disappointment and resentment against Obama. Almost surely, Hillary has secured a promise of succession to the presidency once Obama vacates the oval office. Her tenure as Secretary of State was only the down payment, a resumee builder, one which gives her vastly more credentials than Obama has even to this day. Almost surely, Hillary has been promised, and will insist upon, Obama’s full throated support to win her the presidency in 2016. Nothing less than success will satisfy the commitment that Hillary Clinton feels has been guaranteed to her.
Enter Chris Christie.
By November of 2016, the Democrat Party will have suffered the slings and arrows of ObamaCare, as well as the festering wounds of other scandals (IRS, Benghazi, Fast and Furious, etc) which could erupt unpredictably at the worst possible moment. Among Democrats, only a Chris Christie would be immune from all that. Democrat operatives from the Obama camp, even if not Obama himself, may or may not be wise enough to see that.
Obama himself might have cause to support Christie. First, there may by this time be little that Hillary could do to hurt Obama unless she becomes president, and “investigates” her predecessor, which she might do out of revenge. Also, there may be a great deal that a conservative Republican (Rand Paul, among others) could do to open the sewer of scandals in which the Obama camp is chin deep in stink. If the real truth about Benghazi, IRS, Fast and Furious, and who knows what else — if the real truth is made public, then criminal prosecutions would become a real possibility.
If Christie knows that (and how could he not?), then he can make a very persuasive case to the Democrat power structure to support him for the nomination.
Charlie Crist, observe how a professional does it.
Robert Arvay is a Contributing Writer