Chris Christie went on ABC’s This Week supposedly to defend Mitt Romney, but he ended up praising an Obama ad that claimed Romney will cut taxes on the rich.
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Here’s the transcript from ABC’s This Week:
STEPHANOPOULOS: He’s been making the closing arguments in the battleground states, two-minute ads straight to camera. Here’s a portion of them.
OBAMA: Governor Romney believes that with even bigger tax cuts for the wealthy and fewer regulations on Wall Street, all of us will prosper. In other words, he’d double-down on the same trickle-down policies that led to the crisis in the first place.
STEPHANOPOULOS: If you were on the stage Wednesday, how would you respond to that?
CHRISTIE: Stop lying, Mr. President.
CHRISTIE: Yeah. That’s what I’d say.
STEPHANOPOULOS: What’s the lie there?
CHRISTIE: That he — Governor Romney is not talking about more tax cuts for the wealthy. In fact, what he said is that the wealthy will pay just as much under a Romney administration as they pay today.
STEPHANOPOULOS: But their tax rate will go down into the 20s.
CHRISTIE: Right. But their tax rate will go down, but they will lose deductions and other loopholes that will have them paying the same. That’s what Governor Romney’s plan is.
And so what I’d say — you know, I love those ads. I mean, you know, the president gets to say things like a million new manufacturing jobs, well, how, Mr. President? We’re still waiting. Four trillion reduction in the debt. Really, Mr. President? How? Simpson-Bowles? You haven’t endorsed your own plan. Nor has he come forward with a plan.
I mean, it’s a great ad. I have no doubt about that. It sounds really nice, and it looks nice. But there’s nothing substantive there.
I don’t think the Romney campaign will be happy with their top surrogate calling an Obama ad a “great ad,” and saying it looks nice and sounds nice. What Christie should have said was that this ad was the worst thing he has even seen in his life. He should have been outraged by it. Instead of defending Romney, he tried to advance his own agenda and stature within the Republican Party by calling Obama liar. Chris Christie was more interesting in advancing his own ambitions than helping Mitt Romney save his campaign. It was bizarre that Christie would lend credibility to the ad by praising it in any way, unless he had his own motives in mind.
Since Gov. Christie brought up substance, it seems that there are people within the Romney campaign who disagree with him about the Republican nominee’s plan to cut taxes on millionaires and billionaires.
While Christie was on ABC telling the world that Romney won’t cut taxes for the rich, vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan was telling Fox News that Mitt Romney is going to cut taxes for everyone. Paul Ryan told Chris Wallace on Fox News Sunday that, “The cut in tax rates is lower all Americans tax rates by twenty percent.”
It appears that no one associated with the Republican ticket actually knows what is in the Romney tax plan, so let’s see what the candidate has to say.
In February, Mitt Romney wrote in The Wall Street Journal, “First, I will make an across-the-board, 20% reduction in marginal individual income tax rates. This bold stroke reduces the tax on the next dollar of income earned by all taxpayers. It also reduces tax rates for the many businesses that pay at individual rates and employ the majority of private-sector American workers, thus driving significant increases in hiring and wages.”
After his keynote speech at the Republican convention, it was pretty obvious that Chris Christie wants Romney to lose so that he can run in 2016. Christie has been spending time in Iowa laying the groundwork for 2016. The New Jersey governor wants to look like a good party man by supporting Romney, but his actions like barely mentioning Romney at the convention and not very subtly praising Obama’s anti-Romney ad tell a different tale.
Chris Christie is now going on television and making stuff up for Romney while praising his opponent’s advertising against him.
It is no secret that many in the Republican Party personally dislike Romney, so the question becomes is the Republican Party really this incompetent, or is GOP now out to sabotage their own nominee?
Republicans are abandoning ship in their own subtle or not so subtle ways, and the Mitt Romney is increasingly being left to fend for himself against Obama.
Romney’s got one last chance to get the party behind him at Wednesday’s debate. If he fails, Republican disgruntlement will turn into a full on exodus.
Mr. Easley is the founder/managing editor and Senior White House and Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association