Distance. It’s happened to everyone: you’ve imposed it to keep someone at bay or someone has done it to you. Whether it’s in your personal or professional life, this practice has its roots in the grammar schoolyard. The powerful corridors of politics is no different, especially as the fundraising/campaigning cycle grows closer.
Chris Christie is embroiled in Bridgegate–a Sopranos-esque intrigue characterized by bullying that verges on abuse of power. The New Jersey governor is also the chairman of the Republican Governors Association and is tasked with traveling around the country, giving a fundraising boost to fellow state executives. This travel also gives him national exposure and face to face contact with voters all over–advancing any presidential ambitions. Yet as the drumbeat of scandal and subpoenas beats louder, some of leaders he is charged with supporting are keeping him at arm’s length.
Politics is transactional leading commentators to read the shade thrown (or perceived to be thrown) as a loss to Christie loss but a gain to Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker. In fact this could be true. But the situation for the New Jersey governor, while damaging, is not conclusive. If the subpoenas and investigations do not yield criminal wrongdoing, if his crisis communications strategy stays on track, and Christie continues doing his job, he can emerge stronger than ever.
One more factor: the Wisconsin governor or any other person crazy enough to throw her hat in the presidential rink may have his own escándalo dash presidential ambitions. Like anyone in politics, Governor Walker has accumulated many enemies, including the public workers who can no longer organize and were unable to recall him. In short, with more than two years until the 2016 election, which scandals will emerge, which wild card candidate may be up in the polls and political chatter today, poof!–gone tomorrow.
Yet one more factor are the 2014 midterm elections with both Republicans and Democrats vulnerable. Some Dems are slow to accept President Obama’s fundraising and offers to campaign. Depending on the map, the bungled rollout of the Affordable Care Act is a campaign liability. For example, Mary Landrieu faces a tight race in Louisiana, making the President appearing with her doing more harm than good.
Evaluating President Obama and Governor Christie as a liability or an asset was the main topic on MSNBC’s Live with guest host Betty Ngygen and MSNBC digital managing editor Dafna Lizner. This aired on February 6, 2014.President Obama and Governor Christie (or Hillary Clinton): liability or asset?