Why does Chris Christie do anything and everything? For political advantage. Here’s a great example:
The NJ Senate and Assembly unanimously passed the teacher tenure reform bill, TEACHNJ, on June 25, 2012. All through July, I and other education watchers wondered when he would get around to signing the bill. He kept hemming and hawing, saying he was “considering” it, even though his own party passed it unanimously. What was the hold up?
Then suddenly, on Friday, August 3, his office announced he would be signing the bill that coming Monday. What had changed? Why was he ready to sign now after waiting all this time?
After extensive deliberations over his short list, Romney settled on the 42-year-old Wisconsin congressman who has built a conservative record as a budget hawk in Washington. Romney made up his mind on August 1, the day after he returned from a week-long trip to London, Jerusalem and Poland.
A face-to-face meeting was required, and therein lies a tale. The meeting was arranged for Aug 5 at Myers’ home in Brookline, Massachusetts. The challenge was to get both Ryan and Romney together in the same room without the news media or anyone else outside the inner circle knowing about it. [emphasis mine]
And there you go. Romney made his choice, and Ryan agreed by consenting to the meeting. Mitt’s campaign undoubtedly then called up Christie and told him he wasn’t in the running, leaving Christie free to sign TEACHNJ without worrying about the national repercussions.
Whether Christie was ever seriously in the running is anyone’s guess, but I am sure the Romney campaign did what they could to make him happy and feel like he had a shot. They’re going to need him; not in Jersey, but out among the tea partyin’ base in the rest of the country, where his bullying plays well.
But always remember: everything Chris Christie does is a political calculation – just like his role model.