Chris Christie, the current governor of New Jersey, has earned fans from both sides of the political aisle thanks to his refreshing no-nonsense attitude. With his straightforward approach to handling public relations and lack of political swagger, Christie was bombarded with pleas to enter the 2012 presidential race.
After consulting with his family and top aides, the governor spoke about his final decision on Tuesday. "When you have serious people from across the spectrum, not to mention from all across the country, passionately calling on you to do something as consequential as running for president of the United States, I felt an obligation to earnestly consider their advice," he told reporters in Treton, NJ. He added, "In the end, what I always felt was the right decision remains the right decision today. Now is not my time."
The New Jersey governor's refusal to throw his hat into the ring is largely seen as a boon for the GOP's current leading candidate, Mitt Romney. When asked which of the current GOP candidates he supported, Christie told reporters that he was not ready to make any endorsements.
By refusing to step into the ring for 2012, Christie is leaving himself an open opportunity in 2016. Mitt Romeny would be a tough candidate to beat in this round given his popularity, success with fund-raising and personal wealth. The governor has already made faint indications that he has aspirations for higher political office. When asked if he would accept a vice presidential nomination, he replied, "I don't think there's anybody in America who thinks my personality is best suited to being Number Two."
By refusing to be considered in 2016, the governor can plot a possible ascension in 2016. The huge amount of publicity he received this year will serve him well when his name comes up again. There are no doubt already many strategic discussions between political advisors behind closed doors.
Chris Christie was just one of the many names bandied about for the GOP presidential nominee. Others have included Donald Trump, Sarah Palin, and Michele Bachmann.