Chris Christie, no stranger at all to controversy or confrontation, appeared ready to lay the smackdown on any protesters or hecklers who might pop up and disrupt his town hall meeting Tuesday evening. Christie called it, and sure enough, it happened. A group of students from Rutgers University stood up proudly together in unison, tossing out allegations that the New Jersey governor was not properly handling funds for Hurricane Sandy victims, some of whom are still without homes.
Gov. Christie warned the audience beforehand that protesters were likely to interrupt, demonstrating that this has become a common occurrence at these kind of events. The fireworks started with the hecklers, but continued when the governor got into a verbal wrestling match with an advocate of Obamacare, who stated that Christie should have used money the state saved through the federal government’s funding of Medicaid expansion to help uninsured New Jersey residents purchase health insurance. Christie dismissed the individual, saying that he did not support Obamacare, a move which garnered him praise and applause from the audience.
Chris Christie is always ready and willing to lay the verbal smackdown on hecklers or anyone else who dares to question his motives or stances on the issues. He is known for his sharp tongue and hot-headed temperament, fuming while smoke pours out his ears and flames shoot out his nostrils. While the conduct of the protesters was rude, this is not the real issue or focus. The issue is that Christie is still, at this point, considering a run for president. Electing a man like Gov. Christie, with shaky moral character, to the highest office in the land, would be a mistake of epic proportions.
Given the Bridgegate scandal, his on again, off again buddy-buddy friendship with President Obama, and his propensity for angry outbursts, it should be clear to the GOP that this is not your candidate. The country needs individuals in Congress who have a sense of general morality, of right and wrong that the majority of people can agree with. While his tell-it-like-it-is mentality might be a big hit with a lot of conservatives who are tired of the same candy-coated political speak that pours from the mouth of establishment politicians, the president needs to be a person of careful words, as a sharp tongue can cause wars. When a flared temper becomes a common reaction, that is a sure sign of trouble ahead.
Gov. Christie, while at times pleases the crowds he speaks to, he is still part of the same tired Republican establishment that groups like the Tea Party have been fighting for years to dismantle. All of these town hall meetings and the trouble that seems to constantly follow Christie around should be evidence enough that the governor should not be considered for the Republican Party presidential nomination. While people might applaud Chris Christie when he lays the smackdown on hecklers, how frightening is it to think of the New Jersey hot-head with his finger poised above “the button?”
Opinion by Michael Cantrell