Four years ago, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie resisted calls by Republicans to make a bid for the White House in 2012. During a speech before AEI in February 2011, Christie stated:
You have to believe in your heart and your soul that you’re ready to be president. And I don’t believe that about myself right now.
Christie would reiterate this position in an interview with CNN’s Jake Tapper back in April. “So I get lots of people who come to us and say, oh, you should have done it four years ago,” said Christie, “And I tell you one thing I know for sure I wasn’t ready to be president four years ago. And so the worst thing wasn’t not running; it was if I had run and won already.”
Which brings me to these questions. How is Christie ready to be President now, but not four years ago? What experiences has he gained in that time that make him equal to the task? What achievements does he have under his belt that he did not have then? Was it the dad dancing with Jimmy Fallon?
Now I don’t want to underestimate Christie particularly when it comes to retail politics. I remember having a conversation a couple of years back with a very partisan Democrat who was very dismissive of Republicans. The notable exception Christie. He told me about a friend of his who had met Christie briefly a couple of years earlier and had just run into him at an airport. Not only did Christie remember his name, but remembered the names of his immediate family and his hobbies. It’s the kind of skill that can take you to the White House. Bill Clinton is legendary for remembering those kind of details. If Christie has half of Clinton’s ability in that department, then watch out.
Nevertheless, Christie is still on the record that he wasn’t ready to be President four years ago. It is something he will have to address when he launches his campaign later today. I imagine he will acknowledge it as he did in his interview with Tapper, but suspect he will be short on specifics as to why he is ready now. In which case this will tells me what I already know. Chris Christie still isn’t ready to be President.