- Sep 29, 2005
- Reaction score
- Surfing the Oceans of Liquidity
That's what the WSJ asks.
Chris Christie Clamor Grows, but His Positions Face Scrutiny - WSJ.comChris Christie supporters clamoring for the New Jersey governor to enter the 2012 presidential race generally cite his reputation as a blunt crusader who has fought government red ink and public unions.
Less mentioned are his views on a range of other issuesfrom abortion and immigration to gun control and energy policythat reflect the relatively liberal shade of his state but could dog Mr. Christie if he jumps into the nomination fight. ...
But because of his largely unexamined policy positions, Christie watchers in New Jersey predict the governor might not end that soul-searching if he decides to run.
"Conservatives are enthused," said Patrick Murray, chief pollster at New Jersey's Monmouth University. "But when they get to know him, they might not feel quite so enthusiastic." ...
Mr. Christie appointed to a superior-court judgeship this summer a Muslim lawyer who defended Muslims detained after the Sept. 11 attacks. Asked about groups who had criticized the pick, Mr. Christie told reporters, "It's just crazy, and I'm tired of dealing with the crazies."
Mr. Perry has been criticized by fellow 2012 Republican challengers for championing a law in Texas that gives in-state college tuition to illegal immigrants. Mr. Christie joined in Tuesday, but he has his own vulnerabilities on the issue. He pursued only a handful of immigration cases during his nine years as U.S. attorney in New Jersey, and in 2008 he told a Latino group that "being in this country without proper documentation is not a crime."
While his party heavily favors more natural-gas and coal production, Mr. Christie has gone the other way. He passed an offshore-wind law last year that one study estimated would increase electricity costs by more than 2%. His energy plan, released in June, calls for phasing out coal-fired power plants in the state. He has opposed oil drilling off New Jersey's coastline and imposed a one-year ban on a natural-gas-extraction technique known as "fracking" while experts study its effect on drinking water.
"His energy policies are way more in line with Barack Obama's than with traditional conservatives," said Steve Lonegan, who lost to Mr. Christie in the 2009 GOP primary and now runs the New Jersey chapter of Americans for Prosperity, a conservative public-policy group.
In a Republican race dominated by strong abortion opponents, Mr. Christie would enter as a relative moderate. He said early this year that he began to oppose abortion after his wife, Mary Pat, became pregnant with their daughter, Sarah, who is now 15. But during his 2009 campaign, he opposed requiring minors seeking an abortion to first notify their parents. Thirty-five states now require parental notification.
Mr. Christie also has criticized President Obama's sweeping health-care law, but he didn't join nearly all other Republican governors in suing to overturn the law. And in another apostasy from most in his party, Mr. Christie favors an array of gun-control measuresincluding a ban on assault weaponsthat are opposed by the National Rifle Association. The NRA has not taken a stand on Mr. Christie, who failed to return the group's questionnaire when he ran for office two years ago. "For now," said an NRA spokesman, "we rate him as a question mark."