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Posted at 6:00 PM ET, 03/ 7/2011

EXCLUSIVE: New Chris Christie Video

By Jennifer Rubin

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) is out with a new video, obtained exclusively by Right Turn:

What's this all about? Well, it is, most immediately, all about his February budget address, in which he made this offer:

So today, in this budget, I am once again calling on the legislature to pass pension and benefit reform. In our negotiations on the interest arbitration cap, Mr. President and Madam Speaker, you promised me and committed to the people of New Jersey to bring a real reform package forward and make it law. And I am pleased that it remains a priority for both of you.

President Sweeney, I heard you loud and clear when you were quoted recently as saying: "I want this thing done by the middle of March. That's my goal, to get the pension bill done. But I want to get this stuff finished because it has to be finished. This is what's killing the state of New Jersey. The cost of the pension and health care are destroying the State's economy."

You were right. And I know that Speaker Oliver agrees with you, when she said, "Our system has become unsustainable for taxpayers and public workers alike, so changing this system is a priority."

I am asking you both, and the members of this legislature, to make good on the promise to pass comprehensive pension and benefit reform on Senator Sweeney's timetable, by the middle of March. And as I am asking the Democratic Leadership to make good on their promise, I am offering a powerful incentive to sweeten the pot. If you pass real reform, along Senator Sweeney's timetable, I will make a $500 million payment to the pension fund immediately, not wait until sometime in Fiscal Year 2012, which is all that the law we passed last year requires. This would be the first payment made since fiscal year 2009, by anyone, Democrat or Republican. Let's not wait - real reform on Senator Sweeney's timetable - real money into the pension fund immediately.

Next, enacting reform of our public employee health insurance program now will enable us to take another vital step - providing critical property tax relief to those who need it most: hard working, middle-class New Jerseyans and seniors.

I am proposing today to double the property tax rebate for middle class families and our seniors, to ease the transition to the 2 percent property tax cap we are faithfully implementing this year.

In other words, he gave the legislature a choice: If the legislature actually passes the health-benefit reform proposal that Christie unveiled in September, they can double the property tax rebate for New Jersey taxpayers.

This has been Christie's pattern to date: Make a compelling conservative policy proposal, put the ball in the Democrats' court, use his rock star status and communication skills to turn up the heat and force the Democrats to, in his words, "make a choice." It was an effective approach in passing his first budget.

But is this only about his budget? For those who are thinking maybe, just maybe, there might be more to his video productions than just New Jersey politics, his latest video will only fuel those suspicious -- and give hope to near-desperate Republicans looking the an impressive 2012 presidential candidate. It is this type of impressive media imaging that made Christie a GOP favorite, and might, if he wins another round with the state legislature, increase the pleas for him to throw his hat into the 2012 presidential ring. And if he succeeds in pushing through his agenda, it will be increasingly hard to believe, as he has said to put off those urging his nomination, that he isn't "ready" to be president. If not him, who? If not 2012, when?

By Jennifer Rubin  | March 7, 2011; 6:00 PM ET
Categories:  Governors  
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Comments

I like the way Christie forces the legislature to make a choice between the taxpayers and whatever other constituency the legislature favors. The legislature is only able to favor someone other than the taxpayers by sticking their fingers in the taxpayer's eye. Tough choice, legislature.

Posted by: RickCaird | March 7, 2011 6:37 PM | Report abuse

How unplastic was that, huh? Well, well, well -- the rock star "Meatloaf" Christie coming like a bat out of h*ll to the 2012 political theatre near you. And even if he does have to give a inch to get the goods for the Jersey Shore thru the Legislature -- two outta three ain't bad!

(And I only saw Rocky Horror's Picture Show once, so while technically experienced, still just like a virgin at heart, so let me swoooon with JR to CC R(ock Star)!!

Posted by: aardunza | March 7, 2011 6:45 PM | Report abuse

Ono, forgot my "BandWidth" pun. Mother, don't leave me until the Fifth of November! G#d, what a concept...

Posted by: aardunza | March 7, 2011 7:04 PM | Report abuse

What, no one got a penny layin' round for the old guy? (Training for your finger-pie eating contest begins when the importuning in ernest does, honest!) Oh well, didn't work out so I will. Don't treat on me, it's on the Governor.

Posted by: aardunza | March 7, 2011 7:18 PM | Report abuse

On a Saturday several months ago Sirius Satellite Radio provided commentary on the gathering on some venue -- it may have been the second or third gathering after the 9/28/11 Beck thingy on the Washington DC mall – on its conservative and liberal channels. I was driving down to SC from Northern VA where I work, so I had 500 miles -- eight hours -- to listen to the coverage. The conservative channel, Sirius 144 the Patriot channel, directed listeners to the liberal channel -- I’m too lazy to look it up right now -- so I switched between the two for a bit. I was truly amazed at the language on the liberal channel: it struck me as puerile, with offensive language and childish chatter. The two hosts spend some time making fun of Christie, his weight, his size, and the obvious difficulty he must have in performing bodily hygiene in quite obnoxious terms.
Christie admits he’s fat, too fat, not the role model type for physical fitness. So is the majority of Americans, and that’s a well-documented fact. So how well will attacks on the governor’s heft play with the public? Christie can and does acknowledge his weight in order to focus on his ideas, his plans for the state. The opposition does not have much in the way of rebuttal, that’s why its various groups focus on his weight.

So to those who post here, how about helping out by criticizing his policies, arguments, and initiatives, and not his oversized personal presence? The public does not seem to care about the latter, so why bother.

Unless you have no counter to his sensible arguments…

Posted by: SCMike1 | March 7, 2011 11:29 PM | Report abuse

Starting this year your child (or children) cannot be denied coverage simply because they have a pre-existing health condition. If you don't have insurance for you and your children search "Wise Health Insurance" online they are the best.

Posted by: aprylhaynes | March 8, 2011 1:28 AM | Report abuse

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