Journalism v. hackery

Is there anyone now saying that Christie might be innocent who wasn’t predicting a Romney win in Oct. 2012?

Steve Kornacki is a reporter.

Jennifer Rubin is a partisan hack. So is Stuart Rothenberg. So is Ruben Navarette. And of course Rich Lowry.

Query: Is there anyone telling us now that Christie is, or might be, innocent who wasn’t telling us in October 2012 that Mitt Romney was going to win or that the election was “too close to call”?

Is the Christie campaign now a corpus?

The Republicans’ best shot at the White House in 2016 just got stuck in traffic.

Some political reporters have been parsing poll questions about whether Conegate makes people think better or worse of Gov. Soprano, and Christie’s cheerleaders are rejoicing over the results. I never know how to read those answers; it matters too much whether the X% who say they think better or worse of someone due to Y were previously for him, previously against him, or previously undecided, and the crosstab cell sizes are usually too small to say anything about that.

But this only matters because Christie was getting set for a Presidential run, and because Christie – and only Christie, in all the polls I’ve seen – was close to HRC in 2016 trial heats. In the CNN poll from December, for example, he was two points up, 48-46, with Paul Ryan down 52-44 and all the others were down by 13-21 points: e.g., Hillary 58, Jeb 37. (Quinnipiac also showed Christed doing best, though with the others not as far back.)

So: Here’s the latest from the Marist poll:

If Hillary Clinton and Chris Christie were to face off in the 2016 presidential election, Clinton would defeat Christie by double digits. Half of registered voters — 50% — would support Clinton compared with 37% for Christie. 12% are undecided. When Marist last reported this question in December, voters divided. 48% supported Clinton while 45% were behind Christie. Seven percent, at that time, were undecided.

And that, as they used to say back when newspaper copy was typed, is a

– 30 –

End of story.

Of course I still hope the cover-up breaks down, just to make Christie’s defenders look as stupid and unprincipled as they are. But in terms of Presidential politics, I’m not sure it matters. It looks to me as if the Republicans’ best chance to retake the White House in 2016 just got stuck in traffic.

Update Ooops! Ed Kilgore had this first. The way I look at it, if I’m only half a day behind Kilgore in political analysis, I’m doing OK.

Twitter as political haiku: Christie presser

Greatest Tweets from the Christie presser. E.g.: Governor throws aide under bus. Bus stuck in bridge traffic.

Yes, the 140-character limit in Twitter can encourage superficiality. But Raw Story has a compilation of Tweets after this morning’s bout of histrionics, and some of them are pretty great. My favorites (lightly edited):

Steve Martin:

Governor throws aide under bus. Bus stuck in bridge traffic.

Bruce Arthur:

I do hope Chris Christie spends the rest of his life searching for the real traffic study.

Ben Jacobs:

If it’s a legitimate traffic study, the female body finds a way to shut the whole thing down.

Michael E. Cohen:

What do you call someone who dies because of a politically-inspired traffic jam? A “corpus Christie.”

 

Christie lied. An old lady died.

Yes, there was a heart attack victim whose trip to the hospital was delayed by Chris Christie’s gridlock. She didn’t make it.

Turns out my earlier plea for someone to invest some shoe leather into finding people who were seriously damaged by Conegate has been answered.

Emergency responders were delayed in attending to four medical situations – including one in which a 91-year-old woman lay unconscious – due to traffic gridlock caused by unannounced closures of access lanes to the George Washington Bridge, according to the head of the borough’s EMS department. The woman later died, borough records show.

No, of course we can’t be sure she would have survived had she received prompt attention. But now that we know that the gridlock that caused the delay was deliberately caused as an act of political retribution, it seems to me that criminal charges would be fully justified, starting with reckless endangerment. (How is slowing emergency response time different from shooting a gun in the air? In each case, there’s a reckless risk that someone will be hurt or killed.)

And of course once the criminal charges start coming in, one of Christie’s cronies is going to finger him. He wasn’t stupid enough to send any emails, but they weren’t stupid enough to do this without his implicit approval.

As for Christie for President 2016, the technical term is “toast.”