November 15, 2009

CLARITY IS A SKILL:

Christie's charisma is already a force: Biting and blunt, he revels in the public side of politics - unlike the man he'll replace. (Jonathan Tamari, 11/15/09, Philadelphia Inquirer)

In public appearances since Election Day, Christie has been blunt, funny, pugnacious, decisive, and, above all, forceful. He has been comfortable joking with teens and mingling with politicians, in control when dealing with the press, and defiant toward opponents and detractors.

Christie's words seem to barrel downhill toward his audience. His answers, often short on detail, are long on punch.

Take, for example, his comments a day after his victory, when he toured a Newark charter school and talked up his plans for education.

"If anybody thinks I'm kidding about this, they're going to watch. I am not going to continue to allow urban children to be failed and cheated by failing public schools," Christie told reporters.

When he said the "forces" against reform were powerful, he was asked to clarify: Did he mean the teachers union, which had blitzed the state with anti-Christie mailers after he declined even to seek its endorsement?

"That's exactly who I'm talking about," he said.

Christie's public persona is a sharp contrast to that of Gov. Corzine, who often has been fumbling in the spotlight and meandering in his speech, leaving the public and lawmakers to parse his words for possible meanings.


Posted by Orrin Judd at November 15, 2009 8:07 AM
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