Friday, May 28, 2010

Chris Christie at the Manhattan Institute

This is the first of four parts. The remainder of his speech can be found here. I recommend you take the time to watch them all, about 33 minutes total.

A nice synopsis here.
NO ONE could mistake the Grand Ballroom of the Plaza Hotel for one of the cavernous banquet halls of the Garden State. If there is a staircase at the Plaza, it actually leads to a second floor. Standing front and center Tuesday morning in the Gatsbyesque halls was one of the least subtle of politicians, a born-and-bred Jersey guy who has made his reputation by saying what he thinks regardless of consequences. Move over Eloise, Governor Christie was at the Plaza.

The governor was delivering a speech at a breakfast sponsored by the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research. Christie was preaching to the choir. But what a good preacher he has become.

The governor may continue to deny that he has any interest in running for higher office. With less than a half-year on the job, it is too early to see a national campaign as more than the pipe dreams of Republicans looking for a savior instead of another Captain Ahab with a political death wish.

If there is a Gospel According to Christie, it is that big government can shrink, can act responsibly and provide the tools needed to reduce the bloated costs of municipal governments. Maybe it was all talk. Maybe the coffee served was laced with Kool-Aid. But it was impossible not to be impressed by the governor’s confidence.

Chris Christie is not a bully. He’s the governor of New Jersey and he knows it and intends to make sure that you know it as well. If that is startling in New Jersey, it is revelatory in New York, a state sorely lacking strong leadership at the top. New Yorkers are as hungry as New Jerseyans for someone with a plan and the bluster to implement it.

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