It wasn't going to be over until the fat man sang. Then yesterday, he did. New Jersey Governor Chris Christie announced he's not making a bid for the White House.
Admittedly, Christie had some problems as he sat on the fence, like Humpty Dumpty. Should he run or have another Triple Whopper® with fries and a float at Burger King? Or perhaps end the whole thing with a nourishing "milk" shake at McDonald's?
He was a late starter in the race for the roses in the carnival known as the Republican presidential primaries, already starring the nine dwarfs.
In a smoked-filled backroom at the Palisades IHOP, a Christie for President Organization frantically coalesced around America's Mayor, Rudy Giuliani. Veterans of the Rudy for President Campaign wondered if they could tap the same magic that worked so well for their idol in 2008. In the end, the Rudy-built team decided it would have its work cut out for it.
This new candidate looked and sounded a lot like Tony Soprano. While the governor has no connection, of course, it is a well known fact that you can't throw a rock through the windows of the state capitol in Trenton without hitting somebody in the Family's pocket, so to speak.
Some, however, argued that the governor looked more like Ralph Kramden, the lovable bus driver in the 1950s sitcom, The Honeymooners. This connection would be good for the labor vote. On the campaign trail, the governor could have yelled, "Ooh, Obama, one of these days: Bang! Zoom! Right in the kisser. Straight to the moon!"
"I got a BIIIIIIG mouth!"
As an orator, Gov. Christie is remembered for uttering, "Get the hell off the beach." And post-Hurricane Irene, there was his even more eloquent, "Get the hell back on the beach."
He has not been that good for business and the economy. You may have heard of Alaska's infamous "bridge to nowhere." Well, our Chris is famous for killing the tunnel to somewhere. It was Christie who in 2010 said, in effect, New Jersey should get the hell out of the tunnel business. All the Mass Transit Tunnel across the Hudson to Manhattan would have done is provide jobsjobjobs -- some 6,000 of them, with contractors like Railroad Construction Company LLC and the dozens of other construction firms who bid for the work that was scheduled to last about 10 years.
Better to have a governor tough on spending, his fans say, than help the long-suffering commuters. So what if the state had to pay back to the US Treasury a whopping $95 million worth of funds advanced. And it only cost the state $1.2 million in legal bills to work out the deal.
But we in the Draft Gov. Christie for President movement were not discouraged. "Value meals" are in play in the GOP today. Witness the surprising victory by Herman "the Pizzaman" Cain in the Florida straw poll last week. The Godfather pizza king offers voters his 999 plan to save America. That's nine toppings for $9.99, as we understand it... quite a deal. And he will deliver anywhere in Continental US.
Nobody projected good nutrition more than Tubby Christie.
Aside from looking like a walking heart attack, candidate Christie had strong appeal to three constituencies: those needing to go on a diet, those on a diet and wishing to stop it, and the financially strapped, out-of-work-too-long Americans wrestling with food budgets. He must be doing something right.
We were so confident that Tubby Christie would decide to run, we had even written a campaign song for him, adapted from a well known folk song:
I don't want him, You can have him,
He's too fat for me,
He's too fat for me,
He's too fat, much too fat,
He's too fat for meeee *
(* Thanks to Ross MacLean and Arthur Richardson, the Too Fat Polka lyric writers, for their contribution to the campaign.)
There were those who said use of such a song would smack of negative campaigning. Instead of good nutrition, they argued Republicans should stick to real issues, like the fact that Obama is a secret Muslim, or that Sarah Palin does coke, or that Newt Gingrich owes big money to Tiffany's.
Alas, yesterday, when the fat man sang, he said, in effect, the hell with the presidency. His message to the American people: fuhgeddaboudit.
The good news is we of the Draft Gov. Christie for President Committee are not giving up. We are the first to urge him to run for President in 2016. It'll only be four more years until we can kick him upstairs to the White House and out of the state.