Pulling A Fast One
When you're the media darling Chris Christie is, sometimes your actions gain out-sized attention. And sometimes they receive little attention at all.
And so it has been on the matter of firearms. Recently, the NRA ran an ad arguing that President Obama is an "elitist hypocrite" for questioning the organization's advocacy of armed guards in schools while his children at school are protected by law enforcement. Rather than opposing the NRA's solution, supporting reasonable gun safety measures, or simply pointing out that the pressure group had displayed ignorance of the facts, Christie made the tough political choice to defend children. He received praise far and wide (except from Republicans who realize Chris Christie is the only cause Chris Christie is interested in) when he proclaimed
I think it's awful to bring public figures children into the political debate. They don't deserve to be there. And I think for any of us who are public figures, you see kind of ad and you cringe. You cringe, because it's just not appropriate in my view to do that. They've got real issues to debate on this topic. Get to the real issues. Don't be dragging people's children into this; it's wrong.
Not all have been taken in. Jersey Jazzman blogs
... on the issue of school funding, Chris Christie is one of the biggest hypocrites in America.
All of Christie's children go to private schools which brag on low student:teacher ratios, broad and rich curricula, lots of extracurriculars, and large amounts of spending per child. His eldest son, for example, attended the tony Delbarton School in Morristown...
Yet even as the Christie children have enjoyed their education - an education free of state-mandated standardized testing - the governor himself has waged a campaign to defund schools across the state. Back in 2010, he slashed state aid to schools so severely that even relatively affluent districts were forced to cut programs and charge activity fees. Shamelessly, when the courts forced Christie to restore many of his cuts (thank you Education Law Center!), he actually bragged that he had increased state funding for education, when all he had really done was partially restore the draconian cuts he made the year before (you have to include the surpluses he forced districts to use up as part of his cuts).
Asked by a constituent about sending his children to private schools (video below), the Everyday Guy and fellow next to you on the bar stool replied "First off, it's none of your business. I don't ask you where you send your kids to school, don't ask me about mine." The governor of the state. Seriously.
It's easy to defend children, especially those of the President of the United States. It's not so easy to challenge the gun lobby. In a press release, the New Jersey Second Amendment Society
has announced that NJ Governor Chris Christie has accepted his invitation to speak at the February 8 rally in Trenton being held to promote second amendment rights in New Jersey.
(President) Fiamingo commented in his news letter to the NJ2AS membership: “I had an opportunity to invite Governor Chris Christie to speak at our Rally Day event and he accepted. I confirmed with his office that we may include him on our roster. Unless something critical comes up, we can expect him to make an appearance.”
Running for re-election in a state in which Barack Obama remains fairly popular, Governor Christie stands foursquare behind the President's children while he panders to the gun lobby. Chris Christie is big, brash, and blustery. Bold, not so much.