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Christie Asks Reporters to “Take the Bat Out” on State Sen: Just Rhetoric? (VIDEO)

Christie Asks Reporters to “Take the Bat Out” on State Sen: Just Rhetoric? (VIDEO)

New Jersey governor Chris Christie hasn’t exactly kept his political aspirations—and in particular, his national political aspirations including the White House one day—under wraps. A recent New York Times article notes that Christie has recently begun to be much more vocal about his anti-abortion stance and his views on global warming than previously, a possible indicator that he’s looking beyond New Jersey for the next step in his political career. With that in mind, you’d think Christie would be a little more careful about the words he lets fly about his opponents.

Just last week, Christie used shockingly violent rhetoric in referring to State Senator Loretta Weinberg, who represents New Jersey’s densely populated Bergen County. As the Star-Ledger, reports, Christie accused Weinberg of hypocrisy in light of pension double-dipping. Weinberg had accused Christie of having double standards about criticizing political allies and, specifically, about being “soft on his political allies after it was reported that Essex County Executive Joseph N. DiVincenzo Jr. was drawing a government salary and also receiving a state pension” (Star-Ledger). After it was revealed that Weinberg has been simultaneously collecting both a pension and her lawmaker’s paycheck—Weinberg, a widow, defended herself by saying she had been forced to dip into her pension after losing her life’s savings in Bernie Madoff’s Ponzi scheme—Christie said on April 13th:

“She is the queen of double standards…No matter how long you’ve been around here, the hypocrisy meter has to tilt on her.”

Christie also got a little more “colorful” with his rhetoric, saying to reporters at a statehouse news conference:

“Can you guys please take the bat out on her for once?”

Here’s a video including footage of Christie saying the above:

In New Jersey, people have been quick (and equally colorful) to rush to support their governor, and also to criticize him for what I’d say is a troublingly violent choice of words. The New York Times notes that Democrats have been quick to call Christie out for his too-blunt words:

The Assembly speaker, Sheila Y. Oliver, called the governor’s statement “a new low in public discourse.” Stephen M. Sweeney, the Senate president, called it “offensive, indecent and so far beneath the standing of a public official it boggles the mind how the governor could even think of uttering it.”

Michael Drewniak, the governor’s press secretary, said it was clear that Mr. Christie was simply accusing the news media of being too easy on Ms. Weinberg, and that “ratcheting it up beyond that is partisan politics at its worst.”

Mr. Christie’s instinct when criticized is generally to counterattack, not explain himself. He has labeled the teachers’ union “political thugs,” accused other officials of lying, and charged teachers with “using students like drug mules” to carry political messages.

All very well for gaining headlines and comments on blogs and news websites. But you have to wonder what Christie might say about such issues as global warming (he has suggested that human activity may not be why the planet is heating up), the health care law and immigration. Within New Jersey — traditionally a Democratic state — Christie has been careful not to air his views on such topics unless asked. Then in January, while attending an anti-abortion rally in Trenton, the NJ state capital, Christie said:

“This is an issue whose time has come.”

In September, he vetoed state funding for family planning clinics. In February, he also vetoed funding for family planning that the Democratic-controlled Legislature had approved. He has also applied for federal money for abstinence-only education.

Christie’s wielding of his gubernatorial veto certainly makes his position on, or rather against, abortion and other issues more than clear. Actions do, as they say, speak louder than words. In the case of Chris Christie, it might also be said that words can speak very strongly, and revealingly, indeed.


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Photo by Hoboken Condos.

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7:31AM PDT on Apr 29, 2011

I was amazed my fellow new jersyeans voted in cris "crispy cream" first of all he's a republican, second it was clear from the start he was not interested in our chlordane education not to mention his very public aspirations on disbanding our workers unions. This is just my feeling and I'm sure I'll get haters because of it but I really don't care; when it comes to someone "governing" me I want someone with some self control and it's obvious by his stature he has none!

5:16AM PDT on Apr 20, 2011

MarLeah Manning
Wish I could send YOU a star-I totally agree with your comment. And trying to have a discussion with those people is like banging your head against a brick wall.

12:01AM PDT on Apr 20, 2011

Another pompous, arrogant, power-hungry ass.

10:42PM PDT on Apr 19, 2011

You gotta like a guy that is against killing unborn babies, talk about a non violent policy...

8:21PM PDT on Apr 19, 2011

Apparently there are trolls here. Why is it that someone can comment without a profile?
Just curious... Why bother responding to their inance comments.

4:55PM PDT on Apr 19, 2011

Another arrogant Republican shooting off his big mouth.

3:36PM PDT on Apr 19, 2011

Yet another ignorant politician using violent rhetoric. When will they ever understand that words can have consequences that end up with people getting hurt. Grow up and stop acting the thug, Christie.

3:17PM PDT on Apr 19, 2011

This guy acts like a pig, doesn't even matter if he's even close to right. A*o(e.

3:05PM PDT on Apr 19, 2011

He looks like another one to vote out of office.

2:57PM PDT on Apr 19, 2011

Steven B., Marianne C., and Dianna M.

Of course it wasn't ok for that woman to be asaulted and the man who did it has a case pending for it as well he should be. But I knew that somebody would mention it so i did. But I still haven't heard any other examples of Tea Party violence.
And no arrests mean nothing happened is just like saying not guilty is the same as innocent. And arrests were made in a similar protest in Washinton.
And I seriously doubt that all those groups were represented, maybe they were, but of course I was talking about only a few.
I don't even know if the bad eggs were from Wisconsin.
Lou Ayrs bombing may have been 40 years ago, but he just recently stood my his actions.
Oh and I also watch MSNBC, CNN, and get regular updates from the Huffinton Post, the Daily Kos, and Unlike you people I actually listen to all points of view before making my decissions instead of just following the line. I am neither Republican or Democrat but have supported both their positions on different issues.
Oh, and I have no idea what newsvine is so no, I'm not that Mike.

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