Chris Christie Turned Down Offer To Do SOTU Response

Chris Christie turned down the chance to give the response to tomorrow's State Of The Union Address

The Newark Star Ledger reports that Chris Christie turned down the chance to give the response to tomorrow’s State Of The Union Address:

William Palatucci, Gov. Chris Christie’s close personal and political confidante, told The Auditor that Republican leadership had inquired with the governor about rebutting President Obama’s big speech on Tuesday.

“They tried to see if there was some interest, and there wasn’t any,” Palatucci said.
He said Christie wants to stick to New Jersey.

“The governor is in the midst of his legislative agenda,” Palatucci said. “There’s no reason to try to get involved in federal issues.”

When you combine this decision with Christie’s recent announcement that turned down a speaking invitation at the CPAC this year, and it’s pretty clear what he’s going here.  For the better part of a year, Christie has been surrounded by speculation about Presidential ambitions and he continues to be asked about them even though he repeatedly denies any desire to run in 2012. If he were to deliver the response to the State of the Union, that speculation would only increase. The same goes for speaking at CPAC, which is already set to host many of the probably candidates for President in 2012. Moreover, it is true that the New Jersey Legislature is about to convene. Maybe Christie really just wants to do his job right now.

A final point. Presidential ambitions aside, there is very little upside, and a lot of downside to a politician like Christie following the Presidents speech in the well of the House of Representatives. Just ask Bobby Jindal.

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Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020. He passed far too young in July 2021.