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Response to Laxman (Original post)

Mon Jul 20, 2015, 12:34 PM

93. Too nice to yell at people at town hall meetings anymore -- or too tired?

Last edited Tue Jul 4, 2017, 12:31 PM - Edit history (2)

How goes it with the Christie presidential campaign? As well as can be expected:

Among all the declared presidential candidates, he's #8 on the money-raising list. And among the declared Republican candidates, he polls at #9 -- important because only the top ten candidates will be invited to the first round of Republican debates.

Since Independence Day weekend, Christie has hung out in New Jersey just long enough to see a U2 concert with Jon Bon Jovi, shrug off a 10% increase in New Jersey Transit fares, and announced that he won't be doing any more New Jersy town hall meetings:

Patch.com: Gov. Chris Christie once promised he would hold weekly town hall meetings...So why didn’t he follow through?

“To be honest, I got tired of them, so I didn’t do it,” he said. "I just got tired of it during that period of time. I had a lot of other things I was doing...And so when I do a lot of that other stuff, developing national ideas, raising money, all that, that’s done on time that’s outside my workday most of the time. And so the people that really affects are Mary Pat and the kids.”

When a reporter pressed him on the subject, Christie got testy. “You stand up for two hours and do that, OK? Tell me how you feel, buddy,” he said.


Well, standing for two hours might be starting to drain on Christie physically -- which could explain why he didn't have the energy to do his usual high-volume one-sentence obliteration at a town hall in New Hampshire:

NJ.com: Far away from the friendly-faced, Republican-heavy ZIP codes that have defined his New Jersey town halls, Christie almost immediately found his plan to reform Social Security challenged...

"Anybody here want to work a couple extra years?" a woman asked..."Why not just make really rich people pay the same amount as middle class people? Why shouldn't they have to pay Social Security on their full income?" Currently, the 6.2 percent Social Security withholding tax only applies to wages up to $118,500.

"Well, 'cause I'm gonna...Because my plan says they shouldn't get Social Security," Christie answered.

"But why are you asking middle class people to work longer?" the woman continued, unmoved. "It doesn't seem fair."

"What will be less fair is when Social Security goes bankrupt," Christie answered, noting that he planned to phase in the age increase over 25 years. "That's plenty of time to plan for an extra two years of work."

"But you shouldn't have to," the woman said.

"But you do have to," Christie insisted.

"If the really rich people paid on their full amount of their earning -- just like us in here have to do -- " offered the woman...

"There are not enough rich people in the United States," interrupted Christie, "nor enough money, to be able to fund what we would need with a growing population, to be able to have that be the only way you can solve this."

...The woman wasn't having it. "It's always going to be a tax increase," she said, asking, "When is someone going to stand up for the middle class and say, 'You guys have paid enough!' We've put enough in. Let the one per centers, or whoever they are, pay. This trickle down thing isn't working."

Christie, who has lost his patience when continuously challenged in New Jersey town halls, kept his cool..."Are you running for president?" Christie later asked, his voice even and calm, "because I'm not here to debate you..."


On the other hand, maybe Christie has been advised to at least try being as nice to the constituents who can give him votes as he is to the constituents who can give him big donations. He almost made it, but his sarcastic, contemptuous "Are YOU running for president?" didn't stick the landing: a cool, calm, even-voiced bully is still a bully. Maybe if he did his meetings from a seated position, he wouldn't get so tired and cranky.




P.S. Get rid of the Social Security salary cap altogether, and not only would it stay solvent forever, everyone could pay a lower rate!


rocktivity

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