Will Chris Christie Pull a Schwarzenegger?

When Arnold Schwarzenegger was elected as the Governor of California back in 2003, a lot of Republicans were excited. They had every right to be. One of their candidates winning a state-wide election in the deep-blue state of California was something many in the party never believed they’d see again in their lifetime. Sure, they understood that it was Schwarzenegger’s celebrity and not his platform of fiscally-conservative reform that won him the victory. Still, the fact that he boldly and successfully ran on such an agenda gave the GOP hope that they could use his momentum to make inroads in precincts previously thought to be a waste of their efforts. More importantly, Schwarzenegger brought something to the party that they’ve long been lacking: A cool factor.

It doesn’t get any cooler than being an American icon after all, and that’s exactly what Schwarzenegger was. In the eyes of millions, the man walked on water. The Governator was such an attractive concept that political activists almost immediately began seeking support to overturn the natural-born-citizen clause in the U.S. Constitution in hopes of someday getting him on a presidential ballot. The Republicans were so eager to glom onto his star power that they gave him a prominent, prime-time speaking role at the 2004 Republican National Convention. Schwarzenegger’s political future seemed incredibly bright.

Surprisingly, the ride didn’t last long.

Schwarzenegger called a special election in 2005 to present multiple ballot propositions to California voters, the passage of which would let him correct the vast budgetary problems that spawned his campaign in the first place. He met overwhelming resistance in the form of lobby groups and unions that spent hundreds of millions of dollars smearing both him and his agenda. Their campaign was so effective that by the time of the election, Schwarzenegger’s previously high approval rating had been knocked all the way down to 37%, and every one of his propositions were soundly rejected by voters.

It was a humiliating defeat for Schwarzenegger – one that he did not take well at all. In appearances, he seemed as if his feelings had legitimately been hurt by the public turning against him. He had lost his acceptance with the masses, and it had to be an unfamiliar feeling to him. After all, he’d spent the past two decades as an incredibly popular star.

The 2005 election was a turning point for Schwarzenegger. It was the moment he seemingly decided that being liked was more important than saving his state from economic ruin. Instead of continuing to tell Californians what they needed to hear, he began telling them what they wanted to hear. To appease his predominately liberal electorate, he hired a chief of staff from the Democratic party, took a much softer stance on illegal immigration, began pursuing liberal causes like climate change, and pretty much abandoned all fiscal restraint. The icing on the cake was his vocal criticism of his fellow Republicans – the single respectable trait that the mainstream media can ever manage to identify when it comes to Republican politicians.

The transformation was so significant that former, left-wing critics (including San Francisco mayor Gavin Newsom and actor Warren Beatty) joked that Arnold had turned into a Democrat.

From purely a popularity standpoint, Schwarzenegger got what he wanted. He once again became the toast of the town. His approval rating rose back up and he was elected to a second term in office. Unfortunately, the price-tag for acceptance came at the cost of leaving the state in far worse condition than how he’d found it.

I can’t help but notice some similarities between Schwarzenegger and New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, at least when it comes to their role in the Republican party.

Like Schwarzenegger, Christie defied the odds to get elected as a Republican in a very liberal state that was dealing with a budgetary crisis. Also like Arnold, Christie’s larger than life persona and bold defense of fiscally conservative principles made him an instant rock star in the party. The GOP recognized his gifts and placed him up on a pedestal, even putting a tremendous amount of pressure on him to join the presidential primary race.

Christie was clearly flattered by the GOP’s persistence, but declined to run for president. He instead became a fierce advocate for Mitt Romney’s campaign. He was so effective in the role that many analysts viewed him as a likely frontrunner for the vice presidency. He even seemed receptive to the idea in interviews. It wasn’t to be, however. Congressman Paul Ryan eventually received the nod, and according to The Politico, the decision may not have sat so well with Christie. Christie was reportedly Mitt Romney’s first choice for the VP slot, with some inside the governor’s camp believing that he had been led on quite strongly as the likely pick.

Reviewing Christie’s demeanor following the Ryan selection compels one to wonder if the governor’s feelings had been hurt, similarly to how Schwarzenegger’s were, back in 2005. There was definitely a tamping down of his customary praise for Romney. At the Republican National Convention, Christie’s delivery came across more like a stump speech in support of his own future political aspirations than it did support for Romney or even the party platform.

Weeks later, Christie’s abundance of praise for President Obama, in the wake of Hurricane Sandy, was perceived as a symbolic gesture that went beyond just a simple display of bipartisan solidarity. Christie seemed to enjoy sharing the spotlight with the president too, the association of which earned him rare accolades from the mainstream media and even his longtime musical idol (but political foe), Bruce Springsteen.

Some Republicans were not amused, citing Christie’s needless bolstering of the president’s image as one of the reasons Mitt Romney lost the election. While the display lost Christie some capital within the GOP, he gained some new found acceptance from the media. Whether it was due to those friendly images with the president, or his willingness to stick his thumb in the eye of his political party, coverage of him became more favorable, and not only from the press. Saturday Night Live invited him on for a guest appearance. Barbara Walters named him one of her Ten Most Fascinating People for her annual television special.

Christie earned media praise again this week when he went off an a colorful public tirade over House Speaker John Boehner’s decision to dismantle a vote on a pork-filled, federal aid package for the Hurricane Sandy recovery. The condemnation was odd, especially from Christie who has made a name for himself as a champion of fiscal responsibility. For him to call into question the moral decency of a man for applying some brakes to a bill because it included billions of taxpayer dollars allocated to interests that had absolutely nothing to do with Sandy…Well, let’s just say it was a bit unsettling.

I understand that any governor of a state obviously wants to appear to his constituency as if he’s doing everything possible for them during a hard time, but there certainly seems to be a transformation going on with Christie. Just a year ago, he was the guy calling for a raise in the eligibility-age of our country’s entitlement programs in order to deal with our country’s debt problem. Just a few months ago, we was the guy calling for all Americans to share the sacrifice of a desperately needed reduction in our government’s spending levels.

Now, he’s the guy declaring that politicians who have the nerve to display some fiscal restraint when it comes to pork-riddled legislation are “selfish” and “disgusting”? That’s the kind of thing that Democrats do. Such sanctimony will earn him applause from his new admirers in the media, but as a citizen of this country who recognizes our serious economic problems and thinks there’s something special in Christie, it’s pretty discouraging.

My hope is that Christie is only guilty of hypocrisy, but my fear is that he’s headed in the direction of Arnold Schwarzenegger – a comparison I would have never even considered just a few months ago. Wanting to be liked is natural human trait, but it takes a strong, principled leader to do the right things, even when they’re not politically popular. Christie has shown bold, principled leadership thus far in his term as governor – far more than Schwarzenegger ever did. If he can manage to keep that discipline, and fight back the urge to turn into a publicity-hungry, self-righteous politician, I think he can play a far more significant role in our nation ‘s history than the one he’s established thus far.

This country needs people like the Chris Christie of a few months ago. It doesn’t need another celebrity.

Author Bio:

John Daly couldn't have cared less about world events and politics until the horrific 9/11 terrorist attacks changed his perspective. Since then, he's been deeply engaged in the news of the day with a particular interest in how that news is presented. Realizing the importance of the media in a free, democratic society, John has long felt compelled to identify media injustices when he sees them. With a B.S. in Business Administration, and a 16 year background in software and web development, John has found that his real passion is for writing. His first novel, entitled "From a Dead Sleep", is now on sale! He lives in Northern Colorado with his wife and two children. Like John on Facebook. Follow John on Twitter.
Author website: http://www.johndalybooks.com/
  • Paul Courtney

    Wish I could let Christie off the hook, but his complaint about Rs includes a riff about how many days (72 is last I heard) with no aid from fed gov’t. Putting aside that Rs in House are the rare example of politicians abiding by their campaign promise to stop waste in spending, if NJ has had no help from fed gov’t since storm, exactly what was he so effusively thanking Obama for last October?

  • gray_man

    I’m not sure why you think Chris Christie is a conservative. At least Arnold started as a conservative, Christie shows no signs of ever having been one.

  • shallowdeath

    I was extremely disappointed to watch Gov. Chris Christie fawn over Barack Obama after the storm Sandy. It reminded me of Johnny Cochran rubbing in his face all over the back and shoulder of O.J.Simpson when the verdict was read. To this day Gov. Christie has ignored the fact that there has been no red tape and Barack Obama lied to the people of New Jersey and New York. Shame on you Christie I thought you were a better man.

  • Frank Carmen

    Will “Christie Pull Another Schwarzenegger”???
    After reading your Article, I’m forced {as an American & a Californian} to ask You
    WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT”??
    He Already Has

  • Wheels55

    Christie has turned liberal. He can’t be trusted in Republican circles.

  • GlenFS

    He’s long earned his way out of my good graces. He lacks the character needed to represent the conservative movement, demonstrated whenever he triangulates with the leftwingers for favor. Another politician who comes to mind that enjoyed the warm leftist media glow as a “maverick”.. John McCain.

  • Ken Sandale

    The lunatics have turned on Christie!

  • Kansan

    Daley is either an inept reporter, or a consumate propagandist. Labor and its allies did not in fact spend “hundreds of millions” to defeat Schwartzenegger’s four 2005 initiatives. Actually the Republican party and billionaires, spent “hundreds of millions to put the four Propositions, 74, 75, 76 and 77, and outspent ordinary citizens and union members by $50 million who were opposed to their scams.

    The polls he quotes are simply B.S. In fact, pollsters like Field and the Public Policy Institute of California, which may have invented the numbers Daly quotes, were consistently 20-30% off in their predictions that all four propositions would pass, while Survey USA were spot on.
    Schwartzenegger managed to bury his record of chronic sexual harassment, his association with Enron’s deregulation initiatives that caused economic meltdown in California, and hooked up closely with larcenous corporations such as the for-profit prison industry (he appointed a GEO Group stooge as his finance director) that got him elected. He did the same as Christie, in fact, who has been exposed by Sam Dolnick at the NY Times for his ties with the Community Education Centers scam artists.
    Spare us!

    • John Daly

      Even if the number you gave is accurate (and I believe it’s short), $155 million IS in the ‘hundreds of millions’. So… What exactly is your point of contention?

      • Kansan

        You apparently have a problem with language, as well. $155 million isn’t in the hundreds (plural) of millions.

        Of course you might be from the Humpty Dumpty School of Journalism.

        (“The word means what I want it to mean…nothing more, nothing less.” “The question is, ‘Who is to be master’?” “That’s all.”)

        • John Daly

          Good lord. This so reminds me of the end of that campfire story scene from ‘Stand By Me’.

          Anything over a hundred million is in the “hundreds of millions” – per my wife who’s a senior financial analyst at a major corporation.

          However, I’ll throw out some honorable mention to you for investing an amazing amount of time in taking on trivial semantics. We need people like you in this country to annoy people at parties.

          • Kansan

            Sorry, but I haven’t bothered to watch it.

            Just finished watching “Hugo,” a moment ago. Now there’s a movie!

            Your wife is wrong. I could ask my wife but she’s asleep. She calculated rates for a major utility and defended them before public utilities commission meetings for many years.

            However, she is not an expert on the English language. Neither are you or your wife, apparently.

            I’ll make this simple, for you. If I have $1.50 and you have $2.00, I have a buck and a half and you have two dollars. I don’t have a “dollars and a half,” nor do I have “a dollar and a halves.” If I had $1.99 I still wouldn’t have two dollars which even the limited skill set cashiers at MacDonald’s could tell you.

            It is a small point, but my point is that you tried to present the fate of Schwartzenegger’s anti-labor initiatives as some sort of a one-sided contest between “union thug” money vs. all that is sweet and good in the world.

            They lost because they stank and $200 million plus (a.k.a., “hundreds of millions,” your term) couldn’t save them. The numbers are readily available on Ballotpedia and other sources wanting only but a bit of simple addition.

            Bishop Romney lost, not because of personal attacks, but because he was candid with people like himself, when he expressed his contempt for the 47% of Americans who live on Social Security and public pensions, who qualify for food stamps because Republican deregulation kicked the chair out from under them and as the working poor, suffer from exploitation of their labor. Did you know that Walmart teaches their employees how to apply for the benefits for which their lousy pay and 36-hour weeks cause them to qualify? After #s 4 and 5, the Koch brothers, the Walton heirs are the 6th, 7th, 8th and 9th richest Americans and the grandchildren are on the billionaire list as well.

            In fact, because of his LDS religion, we were spared a replay of all that “Jeremiah Wright” manure, as only a few of the loonier megachurch preachers dared to bring up that Mitt’s version of religious fiction did not comport with their own.

            He lost because enough American voters were intelligent enough to understand that Obamacare was Romneycare which Mitt got from the Heritage Foundation.

            Meanwhile your ilk were still ranting on about “Muslim,” and “Kenya,” and “Marxist,” and they persist in that nonsense till today, as you no doubt find as you read the majority of mouth-breather responses to your successive comments on Bernie Goldberg’s website.

            Mitt lost because he enlisted one of the field generals in the war on women’s rights as his Veep choice.

            Mitt lost because no matter how many hundreds of millions the likes of David H. and Charles de Ganahl Koch, and Sheldon Adelson, etc., kicked into the pot, most of those who hadn’t been prevented by anti-democratic Republicans from going to the polls wanted no part of him and Paul.

          • John Daly

            Seriously though, you should check out that movie and that scene. I think it will generate some serious self-reflection.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_YMJUHF4UNZWSLIDRXPSSTOHA3Q Shane

    Yes, Christie will turn out to be more like Governor Arnold than Governor Reagan of California.

  • Kansan

    As a reporter, Daley should look for another occupation. This article is deficent in many ways. Obviously he’s incapable of doing original research, nor is he able to distinguish fact from transparent fiction.

    He claims, for instance, that Schwartzenegger, “…met overwhelming resistance in the form of lobby groups and unions that spent hundreds of millions of dollars smearing both him and his agenda.”

    Not hardly. Schwartzenegger’s “reform” “agenda,” was propelled by the expenditures of $8 million to qualify those four ballot initiatives, Props. 74, 75, 76 and 77.

    The four lost by an average of 15%.

    Regarding Prop. 74, which would have essentially ended tenure for any teacher who wanted to take a year off at her own expense to have a child, opponents outspent supporters $76 million to $28 million.For Proposition 75, which attempted by the imposition of incrediby burdensome regulations to keep union members from democratically expressing collective prefereces, labor did step in and outspent anti-labor by about 9 to 1, $52 million to $6 million.

    But Proposition 76, for which Arnold contributed $7,750,000 himself, outspent opponents by ten to one: $143 million to $14.5 million. It would have changed the state Constitution and overturn previous voter-passed initiatives with regard to spending. In Proposition 77, opponents outspent supporters by three to two, $18.5 million to $12.2 million.

    So in fact, Republican/business/billionaires spent $204 million (that is, “hundreds of millions) whereas labor and ordinary citizes, mostly, spent $155 million to oppose these scams. What Daly wrote was a lie, according to easily retrievable public record.

    But the entire article is full of fiction. Schwartzenegger

    • John Daly

      Fist of all, I think it’s cute that you think I’m a reporter, and that this is my ‘occupation’.

      I write commentary.

      Secondly, regardless of your opinion on the merits of the propositions, or how much money supporters contributed to the election, nothing I said was inaccurate. He lost because the highly expensive campaign against him was effective. I couldn’t care less if a lot was spent on the other side as well. It has nothing to do with anything I wrote.

      The point of that part of my commentary was how Schwarzenegger reacted to the defeat.

      • Kansan

        My point was that,in the case of Prop. 76, Schwartzenegger spent almost $8 million himself, of the $143 million proponents spent (plus $2 million to qualify it for the ballot), and opponents spent only $14.475,000.
        That was the Proposition with which he most closely identified. He spent a month touring around the state in a bus to drum up support for that crap. Are you still contending that it was a “highly expensive campaign” that beat the initiative?
        Is your commentary written in a “fact-free zone?”

        • John Daly

          Yes, I AM contending that an expensive campaign brought him down, just like an expensive personal-attack campaign brought Romney down. The fact that both sides in a campaign can spend a lot of money has nothing to do with the merits of the arguments.

          What I don’t get is why you’re so hung up on a trivial sentence that has nothing to do with the point I’m making in my column. There was nothing factually inaccurate about it. You just have a different opinion about something I honestly couldn’t care less about, which is fine. But don’t pretend that I wrote anything factually inaccurate, because I didn’t.

          • awm48

            Don’t feed the troll. You should know better.

          • John Daly

            I know. ;)

  • Ted Crawford

    Chris Christie has proven himself to be a petty, self-serving , hypocrite, EGRO- a Progressive! If the Peoples Republic of New Jersey want to keep him, by all means have at it! Should he attempt to run for any National Office, I and several others will immediately begin a campaign, and raise as many funds as possible to prevent that!
    An enemy from without can often be respected, an enemy from within deserves only disgust and ridicule!@

  • Gloria

    Very cogent comments on Christie. Was completely taken aback by his vicious attack on Boehner! He broke the cardinal rule of Reagan republicanism – that is ‘never speak ill of a fellow Republican’. Up till now he has been great for our state – I fervently hope that he remains true to his fiscal philosophy and does not become the hypocrite he has seemed of late!

  • retsam369

    The most probable next step for christie is to change his registration to democrat. Thats the only way he can win his next election for just about any Statewide position!

  • Bill

    Right from the start I have said that Christie is a Rockefeller Republican and his similar belligerent demeanor should not be confused with conservatism. Barnie Frank has a similar personality but you don’t call his conservative.

  • gbandy

    The real wave in this Nation is for freebies and handouts. This wave also includes class warfare which I think got Obama elected. After all who could possibly be so dumb to believe the whole “Forward” line? Obama has been the worst President in history in spending, deficits, division of classes, foreign affairs, and cover ups like Benghazi and Fast and Furious, Not even to mention the dozens of 2008 campaign promises he flat out failed to keep. Yet the gimmie group still wanted him as President. Now as far as Arnold remember he is married to a Kennedy presently not so happily due the trysts with his housekeeper.

  • Jim Staudt

    Chistie should be declared persona non grata by the Republican party. He is at least partially responsible for the re-election of the worst president in American history, because polls showed that the idiotic fence-sitting “independents” (who should more accurately be called “clueless”) made their minds up at the last minute to vote for Obama based on the stupid fact that for a few minutes, with his new lap-dog Christie at his side, Obama “appeared presidential”. (A poll taken on the day before the election showed that 32 percent of the “independents” said their vote was swayed by the Christie-Obama “bromance”. How stupid is that?) IMHO, any Republican who now votes for Christie for ANYTHING should be formally shunned for life.

  • RickonhisHarleyJohnson

    I noticed the ‘watered down’ speech at the convention, too. But after the hurricane, he really, really, changed. My guess is that he knows mayors and governors get hammered after disasters like that. He wanted to be sure he didn’t end up on the proverbial scrapheap. With too many pols it’s not about popularity for it’s sake alone. It about re-election the popularity brings! This is Christie.

  • ARJ127

    I’ve heard a lot about the aid package being “pork-filled”. I haven’t seen any in depth analysis from “conservatives” as to what constituted the pork. It’s an easy and lame excuse by Boehner and the Republicans to lay the pork barrel charge. It’s quite another to back it up.

    The biggest resistance seems to come from representatives from southern states – the largest recipients of federal government largess.

    Shame

    • John Daly

      Really? A simple Google search will give you exactly the information you claim you can’t find. There’s not exactly a shortage of news pieces on this.

      • ARJ127

        I conducted the Google search. The amount of pork truly identified was less than 6% of the total aid package. Considering that NY and NJ pay a lot more into the federal government than they ever receive in spending and considering that this storm caused more damage than any other storm in history, the 9 week delay in getting a bill passed was unconscionable. This looked a lot like political payback for Christie’s embrace of Obama during the election campaign.

        I’d be astounded if a Republican from New Jersey was ever elected to Congress after this debacle.

        • John Daly

          Try again.

          The bill was supposed to be about immediate aid for Hurricane Sandy victims. That amount made up less than ten billion of the sixty billion dollar total. Boehner was right to pull THAT portion out of the bill and have the House vote on it. The president signed that portion into law today by the way.

          An additional ten billion was for future Sandy aid issues.

          The rest ($40 billion) was for FUTURE disaster-mitigation projects, Head Start (a federal daycare program), money for fisheries in Alaska, free money for the Secretary of Health
          and Human Services, community development block grants (a slush fund), repairs to the Smithsonian, and other unrelated projects.

          This is the kind of stuff that our country could get away with in the past. In our current fiscal situation, it’s an outrage.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Rick-Shaftan/1018567072 Rick Shaftan

    He hasn’t shown “bold, principled ‘leadership’.” He’s bankrupted the state with a state budget 15% higher than the last Corzine budget and by blowing billions paying big corporations NOT TO LEAVE. And then there’s the Revel Casino Bailout. They’re about to file for bankruptcy and take with them hundreds of millions in state pension funds (Christie’s “balanced” the state budget by refusing to make $8 Billion in pension payments and slicing several billion in state aid to suburban and rural (but not urban) towns.)

  • Switchlight13

    The idiot sheep that actually work for a living and that voted for Obama (not many) just got a 2% payroll tax increase while he vacations in Hawaii. The sheep say he looks so HOT in that bathing suit.

  • Switchlight13

    If Christie runs in 2016 as the GOP candidate, I’ll vote Libertarian. I think he stabbed Romney in the back at the convention with his “I love myself” speech and his boot licking of Obama during the Sandy aftermath. Secondly, he is grossly obese and I think that would turn off a nation full of young fitness nuts.

  • artlouis

    If enough Republicans believe that principles mean nothing, and that winning means everything — and we have been hearing that lately from a lot of them almost in those words — then Christie is their man for president. Ryan had principles. He is worth a ton of Christies (which I figure equals about two).

  • Kathie Ampela

    I don’t think Christie is a turncoat, but I could be wrong. You can’t be a governor of a blue state like New Jersey and not do at least some political posturing with democrats. I spent Thanksgiving in Washington Crossing, PA which is literally a stone’s throw from N.J. and was talking to some people from the state. They think Mitt Romney lost the election because he moved too far over to the RIGHT. If this is any indication of the electorate in the state (and I think it is) Christie has to play the game for survival as he is running for re-election. And I also think he is legitimately upset over the destruction wreaked by Sandy. I don’t think he was personally offended because Romney chose Paul Ryan for the ticket…Christie’s signature style would have greatly overshadowed Romney’s soft, apologetic stance. (And I don’t think Mitt Romney really wanted the presidency.) I believe Team Romney neutered Christie as keynote speaker at the convention.

    • Switchlight13

      North East GOP moderate Romney “moved too far right” but Obama was (is) not too far Left…….what morons. I noticed the sheep & media are blaming everyone BUT Obama for the slow response. No such luck for Bush after Katrina.

      • John Daly

        True. If Christie wanted to blame someone for the derailment of the bill, he should have blamed the Democratic senators who added all the pork.

        • http://www.facebook.com/people/Rick-Shaftan/1018567072 Rick Shaftan

          Actually, Christie was part of putting the package together. He knew what was in it before it was proposed. His demand for nearly $40 Billion amounts to $4200 for every New Jersey resident. No one has any idea where any of this money is supposed to go, or what kinds of individuals can expect a check.

          • Kathie Ampela

            That’s the problem with government..they throw money at a problem for votes and much of it goes to waste. Just to be fair, Peter King turned on Boehner also over the Sandy bill.

    • artlouis

      I wonder why you think Romney didn’t want it. I have heard that elsewhere as well, but with no good explanation. He spent a ton of money on two campaigns, he fought like a badger during the primaries. I think perhaps artl mean that he didn’t know how to conduct a jamming, in-your-face campaign against Obama. Or felt that it would backfire. Being a gentleman is what backfired.

      • John Daly

        Some of it was probably fueled by the recent comments from Romney’s son, who suggested that his father was very reluctant to run. However, I think he absolutely wanted the presidency. He just played his campaign way too safe.

        • Kathie Ampela

          I could be wrong of course, but I never believed Romney really wanted to win. The few times he took bold action he ran away from it. EIther he wanted to lose or he and his advisors were incredibly out of touch.

    • http://www.facebook.com/walter.mattson.39 Walter Mattson

      I thing you are not getting the full story. I believe as John has pointed out that only about $10 billion is necessary as the first step in the aid package to the Sandy destruction efforts. It may take more and some say it could be another $10 billion. The additional $4o billion appears to be not directly connected to Sandy and everyone knows it contained pork. Did the liberals put in the extra $40 billion? It sure sounds like that is the case. The problem that Christie, King and liberals did in their rage and reaction reminded me that they were trained by Pelosi.( You have to vote for it before you can find out what is in it.) Both Christie and King should apologize to the republican party for at least attempting to be fiscally conservative and to question and review all expenditures. The Northeast wasn’t going to flood again if some analysis was performed on the expense side of the bill and if the pork was taken out. Without an apology, the republicans should tell them to take a hike.

      • John Daly

        Agreed.

      • Kathie Ampela

        I agree with what Charles Krauthammer said the other day, the rape of our treasury is outrageous and has to stop so I understand what many in this forum are saying but I’m not ready to throw in the towel yet on Christie. I live on Staten Island across the river from N.J. and the hardest hit of the 5 boroughs and a lot of people here agreed with what Christie and King said even though I had mixed feelings about it. They had 9 weeks to review the bill and must have known it was filled with liberal pork, but people who are stranded don’t want to hear it. A guy at work the other day said he called Eric Cantor’s office and told them he thought holding up the bill was was disgraceful. I brought up the pork but he didn’t want to hear it.

        • Kathie Ampela

          This is an excellent article from The American Spectator on this phenenom of the government running to the rescue every time there is a disaster. It lays out just how little “relief” was in the Sandy relief bill and how much actual waste was in it:
          http://spectator.org/archives/2013/01/07/sandy-republicans-pig-out/1

          I’ve extracted a couple of lines that sum it up best:

          “For decades politicians have steadily substituted state welfare for private charity. It will take time to reverse direction, transferring responsibility for aiding those in need back to individuals from governments.

          That won’t be easy. But Americans have to start saying no. No more turning government “aid” into political pork. No more ramming “aid” bills through with no thought or debate. No more draping political extortion with compassionate rhetoric.

          People should help those who suffer all manner of misfortune, including natural disasters, such as Hurricane Sandy. But that doesn’t mean creating more government boondoggles just because they have been labeled as disaster aid.”
          We can’t blame Christie and King because we let this go unchecked for so long.