Report: Romney Campaign Asked Chris Christie To Resign As Governor If He Was Picked As Veep

The New York Post has an interesting report about Chris Christie and Mitt Romney’s Vice Presidential vetting process: 

New Jersey’s Chris Christie was high on Mitt Romney’s list but refused to resign as governor in order to run, a Romney insider told The Post.

But Christie seems to have no ill will. He endorsed the duo, saying Romney and Rep. Paul Ryan understand the nation’s “economic stagnation” and calling them “uniquely positioned to make the tough choices necessary to confront our fiscal challenges.”

If true, it seems like an odd request for the Romney campaign to make. After all, Paul Ryan isn’t resigning from Congress, which will be back in session after Labor Day for several weeks during the campaign season. Joe Biden didn’t resign the Senate four years ago, neither did Joe Lieberman in 2000. I’m not sure why the Romney campaign would require this of Christie. It really seems rather odd. After all, if they really were considering him then they were essentially asking him to do something that would have totally destroyed his credibility on the one issue that has defined him, leadership.

Thoughts?

FILED UNDER: Campaign 2012, Quick Takes, US Politics, ,
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds 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. Before joining OTB, he wrote at Below The BeltwayThe Liberty Papers, and United Liberty Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. Budgie93 says:

    Very strange indeed. Perhaps this indicates that the Romney campaign, in knowing Christie would attract more attention than Mitt (Although this could be said about every single one of the people he could have chosen for VP), would have him resign his post so that the election would be sink or swim for him.

    Or maybe they know something we don’t.




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  2. There’s a big difference between being a member of Congress (Paul Ryan has 240 other Republicans to back him up if he misses a vote) and a Governor (he’s the boss, and looking at a tough reelection fight against Charles Booker). That’s likely why; they can’t have him having to jet back to New Jersey to put out his state’s fires.




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  3. Tony W says:

    Probably a ruse to save face for Christie not being picked.




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  4. It sounds like they were demanding an act of supplication.




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  5. legion says:

    If it’s true, it’s another stark example of just how inexperienced and amateur Romney’s campaign is. When your VP pick has to start the season off by explaining how he’s _not_ like Sarah Palin, you’ve already shot yourself in both feet.




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  6. @Christopher Bowen:

    It’s by no means clear that Cory Booker will be running for Governor in 2013. The reports I’m seeing from New Jersey say that he’s more interested in the race to replace Frank Lautenberg in the Senate in 2014




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  7. Tsar Nicholas says:

    The New York Post is one notch above the National Enquirer. No less than 50/50 odds that the alleged “Romney insider” to which that story makes reference is fictional. Hell, that “insider” might be some homeless dude off whom the reporter bummed a smoke during a hallucinogenic bender. No more than a 10% chance the reporter actually has a legitimate source. Or the “source” might be Christie himself, for his own selfish purposes.

    That said, even stopped clocks perfectly are accurate twice per day, so in the (very unlikely) event that that story is correct then I believe Christopher Bowen above would have the explanation in place. Sitting governors vs. sitting members of Congress are apples vs. oranges.




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  8. Herb says:

    I think this was a case of “Make him an offer he’ll refuse.” Trying to appear to be courting Christie without, you know, actually courting him.




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  9. Ron Beasley says:

    It would appear to me that they thought they had to ask Christie but didn’t really want him so they had conditions they knew he wouldn’t agree to.




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  10. Rick Almeida says:

    @Tsar Nicholas:

    The New York Post is one notch above the National Enquirer.

    +1




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  11. DRF says:

    Christie was never going to be acceptable to the Republican Party base for policy-based reasons; both he and Romney knew this. In addition, his level of experience isn’t sufficient and, as we all know, he’s something of a wild card when it comes to public appearances and statements. There was no way he was ever seriously considered for this. Therefore, there was no reason why Romney would have to concoct an excuse or a face-saving explanation for not picking Christie. My guess is that the NY Post story comes from someone on Christie’s staff who mistakenly believed that an explanation was needed for why his boss wasn’t picked.




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  12. al-Ameda says:

    But Christie seems to have no ill will. He endorsed the duo, saying Romney and Rep. Paul Ryan understand the nation’s “economic stagnation” and calling them “uniquely positioned to make the tough choices necessary to confront our fiscal challenges.”

    Necessary hackery by Christie, but I’m guessing that in private Christie told Mitt to f*** off.




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  13. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    The Democrats in Jersey could have had a field day yanking Christie around with phonied-up “emergencies” and “crises” to pull him off the campaign trail every time he had something planned. And we saw what happened with Palin, the last sitting governor to be on the national ticket.

    Christie is too important where he is. And I still think Ryan would be better positioned in the House, but apparently Romney and he think that winning the White House is a better use of him than staying in the House. It makes a bit of sense; Romney could have used Ryan as a strong ally, but that wouldn’t matter if Romney doesn’t win.




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  14. John Peabody says:

    Agree with the general trend here. Also, there is a large difference between the governorships of Alaska and New Jersey. Far too many real (or imagined) strings that a NJ governor could pull. Thus, for ‘transperency’ (oh, that word!), Christie would have had to say Ta-Ta, Trenton.




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  15. rudderpedals says:

    Be something if this was true for the implication that Ryan’s going to resign to campaign. Shows he’s all in, no going back. Potential positive if Ryan has the stomach for it.




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  16. sam says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    And we saw what happened with Palin, the last sitting governor to be on the national ticket.

    The last sitting half-assed, half-governor, you mean.




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  17. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Thoughts?

    C’mon guys, this is the New york Post. You might as well quote the National Enquirer or the Weekly World News.

    MY thought? Bullsh!t.




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  18. Moosebreath says:

    Hard for me to say, but Jenos is on to something. NJ’s Statehouse is controlled by Democrats who already like doing things to embarass Christie. The prospect of doing it to the VP candidate would have been much to easy a mark.




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  19. wr says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13: “Christie is too important where he is.”

    Yes, without Christie, who will shovel taxpayer dollars to his cronies in the “halfway house” racket? And who will stop the state legislature from auditing the system and discovering exactly how much Christie and his chums have been looting from that system?




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  20. michael reynolds says:

    I understand Romney also asked Christie to lay off the cannolis.




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  21. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: C’mon guys, this is the New york Post. You might as well quote the National Enquirer or the Weekly World News.

    Don’t be dissing the Enquirer. They wuz robbed of a Pulitzer for their exposing John Edwards, a scandal the liberal press had no interest in covering — if not an actual interest in covering it up.




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  22. legion says:

    @michael reynolds: Leave the gun. Tax the cannolis.




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  23. al-Ameda says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    The Democrats in Jersey could have had a field day yanking Christie around with phonied-up “emergencies” and “crises” to pull him off the campaign trail every time he had something planned. And we saw what happened with Palin, the last sitting governor to be on the national ticket.

    And what exactly did those mean Democrats do to Palin in 2008? What ‘happened’ to Palin was that she opened her mouth and stuffed he Pradas into it.




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  24. Ron Beasley says:

    @Tsar Nicholas: Do you suffer from Schizophrenia? How can you make so much sense and then talk nonsense. BTW this is one of your sensible moments and you have several of them the last couple of days. I especially liked the country club mentality reference in another thread.




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  25. Tony W says:

    @sam: “The last sitting half-assed, half-governor, you mean.”

    True, Christie is fully-assed.




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  26. stonetools says:

    Doug, I’m surprised Why isn’t the Post story just characterized as a despicable, unsubstantiated allegation that should be dismissed as a lie unless the reporter reveals their source?Isn’t that the test you applied to Harry Reid’s claim?




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  27. Jen says:

    Governor Chrisite ,should have been the VP pick. He could have turned this campaign around, I do not believe Paul Ryan can do the same.




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