Time for GOP to “Man-Up”

“Man-up,” said Christopher Christie the week before he was elected the Governor of New Jersey against incumbent Jon Corzine.  “If you’re going to do it, at least man up and say I’m fat…If you say I’m fat, I’m fat.  Let’s go.  Let’s talk about it,” quipped Christie, calling-out the incumbent on his negative advertising.

Christie was responding to radio host Don Imus when asked about Corzine’s not-so-subtle advertisements which visually hinted that Christie is too fat to be Governor.  But is that all there was to this pre-election protest?

Evidently, over 49 percent of New Jersey voters either disagreed with Corzine’s advertising, his governing, or both when deciding to elect Christie Governor in a three-way race.  More so, it was what they heard from candidate Christie that caused them to shift in his favor.

As they develop their 2010 campaign strategies, GOP candidates and the operatives running congressional and gubernatorial races across the country should study this race very closely.

Democrats are trying to claim that the off-year gubernatorial elections in New Jersey and Virginia, where former Attorney General Bob McDonnell beat Democrat Creigh Deeds in a blow-out, are not an indictment of Obama’s policies one year after the historic 2008 election.

Bunk.

In exit polling in both states on Election Day, the economy and jobs ranked as the priority issues for voters.  In response to the question, “How worried are you about the direction of the nation’s economy in the next year?” an astounding 89 per cent of New Jersey voters and 85 per cent of Virginia voters stated that they are indeed worried.

Last year Obama won the Democratic stronghold of New Jersey by nearly 15 percent, yet Chris Christie took the state by nearly 5 percent one year later.  In Virginia, Obama won by over 6 per cent of the electorate and this year McDonnell beat Deeds by over 17 per cent.

And they say that Obama and the Beltway Democrats were not a factor in this year’s elections?

In 2008, Democrats demagogued a scared electorate into believing that free market principles were the cause of our economic crisis as a debt-laden economy crumbled into recession.  Yet here we are one year later with unprecedented deficit-ridden government policies, and off-year voters are more fearful of the Democrat’s solutions than they are the crisis.

The truth is that over-taxed New Jerseyans are scared to death of the bill coming due from the spendthrifts in Congress and the White House when they pass so-called healthcare reform and other measures that will continue to expand deficit spending and our national debt beyond reason.  The electorate must be wondering, “Where will it all end?”

So people clearly fear the upcoming tax policies of the national Democrats in Washington, and they are tired of government being the solution for all that ails our economy, instead of relying on the legacy of free market policies that have fueled growth for the United States through our brightest days.  In the context of these fears, New Jersey and Virginia voters ironically turned to Republicans for hope and change after hearing them speak during the race about the core principles of economic freedom.

Chris Christie’s challenge to Corzine in New Jersey to “man-up” represented a critical turning point in that race which should echo across the country.

In his victory speech, Christie drew from the successful formula of Ronald Reagan as he envisioned a better future for New Jersey: “lower taxes…lower spending…cut onerous regulation…get government back under control…”  Reagan was successful because he applied that same basic formula and fundamental principles of freedom to all challenges; and his core belief was that government, as he often exclaimed, was not the solution but the problem itself to overcome.

This is the lesson for GOP candidates looking ahead to 2010: stick to basic principles of freedom and liberty from what some call the soft-tyranny of the power-trippers in Washington, and “man-up” (and “woman-up”) by being straight with voters about what you believe.

Christopher Christie is indeed big – big on the vision that real hope and change can be delivered to the doorsteps of Americans soon through unconditional freedom and liberty.

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