How Tuesday Helped Chris Christie’s Presidential Ambitions

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In 1962, Richard Nixon lost his campaign to be California governor. In 1968, he was elected president.

In between, he spent years campaigning for just about every Republican who would consent to share a dais with him. He built up a huge account of contacts and people who owed him favors. And when the time came to run for president, he called in those favors, winning office on the back of a network of politicians who owed him one.

All of which is to say: History is smiling brightly on Chris Christie’s nascent 2016 presidential campaign this morning.

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Chris Christie Was Right to Quarantine Kaci Hickox, Wrong to Back Down

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We’ve talked about Ebola’s lethality and the government’s staggering ineptitude.

Now it’s time to admit Ebola is here to stay. But not because it’s an efficient killer. It’s much more basic. Ebola will thrive because it is being enabled by America’s Big Three diseases which have been gnawing at our core for years: Arrogance, Incompetence, and Entitlement.

Yet we won’t use the antidote — common sense and intestinal fortitude — because of our denial that we are the problem.

Let’s look at the recent spate of mind-blowing developments helping Ebola gain a foothold:

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Christie, Protester Discuss Fallout From ‘Shut Up’ Incident

Both Chris Christie and protester Jim Keady are talking after an incident earlier this week where Christie told Keady to “sit down and shut up.” And things seem to be working out for both of them! Ahh, politics.

Keady, for his part, is doing the rounds on national media using this line: “I’m a 6-foot-4, 215-pound former pro-athlete. I’m not going to be bullied by him.” Which is not only a clever line, but reminds you he used to be a professional athlete! (He was the backup to U.S. goalkeeping legend Tim Howard for the North Jersey Imperials in the 1990s.)

Keady’s also gotten a lot of attention for his group, Finish the Job, which advocates that Christie has not done enough for Superstorm Sandy relief. “His administration is sitting on $800 million of taxpayer money that was supposed to go to our fellow New Jerseyans,” Keady told Bloomberg. Now people all over the country know about Keady!

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WATCH: Chris Christie to Heckler: ‘Sit Down and Shut Up’

It was just earlier this month when I complained there hadn’t been a great/embarrassing Chris Christie rant in a while. But then we got him saying he’s tired of talking about the minimum wage, and that the GOP needs to win this election so they’re in control for when people vote in 2016.

And now he’s told a constituent to sit down and shut up! He’s picking up the slack.

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UPDATE: Christie Backs Down on Ebola Quarantine

[Update 9:55 a.m.] Gov. Christie had second thoughts after all, the New York Times reports:

A nurse who recently returned from West Africa and was quarantined for the past three days in a tent behind a New Jersey hospital despite having no symptoms associated with Ebola will be allowed to return home to serve out the rest of her mandatory quarantine.

Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey, in a brief interview, said that he expected her to be transferred Monday morning after doctors and federal officials signed off on the plan.

“She didn’t want to be there. She made that clear from the beginning,” Mr. Christie said.

“It’s always been about her condition. And if her condition permits release, then we will work with the state officials in Maine to make sure she could go home,” he said. “Our preference always is to quarantine people in their homes.”

[Original 6 a.m.]

Chris Christie is coming under fire for quarantining a nurse who was exposed to the Ebola virus; but the New Jersey governor is defending his approach to keeping state residents safe.

The policy goes beyond what federal health officials recommend, quarantining any person who has had contact with Ebola patients for up to 21 days, the incubation period of the virus. (The CDC recommends monitoring such people and keeping them off public transit for 21 days.) New York had also imposed a similar policy, but Gov. Andrew Cuomo backed down Sunday night, saying such individuals could spend the 21 days at home.
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Chris Christie Tired of Hearing About Minimum Wage

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With the Pennsylvania governor’s race a complete snore — even the most optimistic Republican poll still gives Wolf a 7-point edge — we turn to New Jersey to see what’s up with Gov. Chris Christie.

When we last left him he was arguing with a retired cop on the “Ask the Governor” radio show. Yesterday, at a fundraiser in Washington, Christie said he was tired of hearing about the minimum wage.

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Poll: Christie Hits Low With Jersey Voters

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He’s thought to be running for president in 2016, but Chris Christie hasn’t done much to stoke support among New Jersey residents back home: A poll shows he’s hit a new low in his favorability ratings among Garden State voters.

Reuters reports:

The Rutgers-Eagleton poll of 842 New Jersey residents showed that 42 percent of registered voters feel favorable toward Christie while 45 percent feel unfavorable. For the first time since August 2011, more voters in the state have an unfavorable impression of him than a favorable one, the poll said. Read more »

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