Christie to reporter: “Are you stupid?”

posted at 2:01 pm on July 2, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

Chris Christie fans delighted in the dressing-down of a reporter during a press conference on Saturday that focused on a local issue — at least until a reporter asked a question of Christie about the special session of the state legislature he called to press for a middle-class tax cut.  Christie responded by asking the reporter, “Are you stupid?  On-topic!”  CNN has the clip:

Total Christie awesomeness? Perhaps, but if so, then reconcile that with your feelings about this:

I know plenty of conservatives who defended The Daily Caller’s Neil Munro for interrupting Barack Obama’s statement with his question as a fundamental duty of a reporter to ask questions of political leaders — an argument Obama boosted by his refusal to take questions after his statement at the Rose Garden presser.  Didn’t the reporter at the Christie presser have the same duty, especially since the special session started in less than two days (today, actually)? Either both reporters were wrong to step outside the boundaries set in the presser, or both were correct and the two public officials in the wrong.

I’d also note that the CNN anchor here seems a lot more concerned about how this reporter got treated than the concern shown for Munro by his colleagues in the media in the aftermath of that Rose Garden presser.

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Christie (RHINO as he is sometimes) does this for political effect because most Americans deep down don’t like most reporters and it helps his poll numbers. Also I think most reporters like it as well because Christie is a quote machine that sells…He could have responded with the typical political canned BS but that would be boring, instead we got what he actually felt about the question being asked at that time…and everybody wins…

William Eaton on July 2, 2012 at 4:40 PM

But, you don’t need to be born in the U.S. to be VP. Only Prez.

anotherJoe on July 2, 2012 at 4:14 PM

I believe Jindal was in fact born in the US, but he parents were not citizens at the time. The term natural born citizen has never formally been defined so nobody can really say for sure. I do know that Bobby Jindal would make an excellent president and he’s just as American as I am.

mike_NC9 on July 2, 2012 at 4:49 PM

Sometimes politicians can get enamored by their own Tough Guy reputation, and take it too far. Kind of like NY Gov candidate Paladino. People were at first thrilled at his tough guy persona, but then repeatedly went overboard… so he lost.
One area where Gov Christie is a tough guy is on climate change. He even mocks those who don’t believe in the man-made global warming. Unfortunately, in this case, he aggressively lines himself up with the leftists. Not a vp choice anyway, especially when some question whether Romney himself has RINO elements.

anotherJoe on July 2, 2012 at 2:07 PM

No doubt that Christie is pretty tough on MMGW. How tough? In spite of your fantasies, he was the first and only governor to actually withdraw his state from the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative.

joana on July 2, 2012 at 5:01 PM

Do you really want to live in a county with a press that’s NOT pushy?

bifidis on July 2, 2012 at 2:41 PM

I live in one. Arguably it’s even more pernicious: the press is only pushy towards one side.

Latest example: check out David Gregory with Pelosi and Jindal last Sunday. It was so blatant it became comical. He didn’t challenge Pelosi a single time – she still managed to fumble it – and started challenging Jindal not even 10 seconds in his first answer. And it wasn’t an oddity.

joana on July 2, 2012 at 5:08 PM

The Chris Christie schtick gets old real fast.

Shump on July 2, 2012 at 2:08 PM

I think it’s awesome. And refreshing.

Good Lt on July 2, 2012 at 2:57 PM

And, I’m somewhere in the middle of these two opinions. He’s a good governor to have in New Joisey,

Fallon on July 2, 2012 at 5:24 PM


Realclearblue on July 2, 2012 at 5:29 PM

Sorry, but sometimes Christie sounds like a bully…a jerk…I like his politics but he’s pretty brash sometimes.

scalleywag on July 2, 2012 at 6:00 PM

I think your argument lacks starts from assumptions that are not demonstrated. The MSM overwhelmingly criticized Munro for interrupting Obama, even after he insisted that was not his intent. The dressing down he received was considered appropriate. This from a president who rarely answers questions.

You don’t link to any conservative writers suggesting what Munro did was appropriate or argue we have some right to interrupt the president. In what way was he defended?

On the other hand, who is defending Christie’s comments? You offer no links to suggest such is the case. While the reporter’s questions were off topic, the Governor’s language is not appropriate in any context. We even teach our five year old children not to call each other stupid.

STL_Vet on July 2, 2012 at 6:00 PM

Not good. I usually like his “edge.”

CW on July 2, 2012 at 6:03 PM

And in the case of Munro, at least the President was civil in admonishing him for interrupting, even though you could tell he was perturbed about the incident. Christie needs to learn some manners and not be so hotheaded.

scalleywag on July 2, 2012 at 6:15 PM

I actually heard this clown is on the short list for VP? Romney would never choose a blowhard loose cannon like this.

silvernana on July 2, 2012 at 6:29 PM

scalleywag on July 2, 2012 at 6:00 PM

I spent too many years in a corporate environment…that HR “touchy feely/talk it out” stuff is a waste of time…bring the bat, get it over with and move on.

That’s why I like CC…

and BTW, he may seem like a leftie wearing rightie clothes, but it’s NJ.

teejk on July 2, 2012 at 6:58 PM

I would think you would require equal treatment by the press to be able to compare the two. Since it isn’t, a handicap or Christie would be appropriate.

tinkerthinker on July 2, 2012 at 7:06 PM

‘for’ instead of or.

tinkerthinker on July 2, 2012 at 7:08 PM

I found all these arguments about Jindal and Rubio’s elibility because one or both of their parents are not US Citizens to be utterly stupid. Barry’s father is Kenyan, and Barry is President.

bayview on July 2, 2012 at 7:24 PM

I wish he’d talk to Dear Leader or Pelosi that way.

Dr. ZhivBlago on July 2, 2012 at 7:31 PM

Chris, if it quacks like a duck…

socalcon on July 2, 2012 at 7:43 PM

The two situations are totally different and Ed is guilty of false equivalents.

With Obama, the reporter allegedly interrupted the President while he was talking and continued to talk over the President. He later claimed that he thought the President was how. However, his question was directly on topic and about the same subject matter as the President’s remarks. The dispute was not on the subject matter of the question but the rudeness of interrupting the President with the question.

With Christie, he was obviously talking about a specific matter (a collapsed water main) and invited questions about that topic. He specifically did not open it up to general questions about any topic, and this “idiot” reporter chose to ignore the specific and expressed limitations that Christie had just laid out before opening it up to questions. So, you “Eff” with the bull, you get the horns.

tommylotto on July 2, 2012 at 9:19 PM

I think Christie’s outbursts are fine for Jersey. He’s the executive there, so if he chooses to do that, no one is going to argue with him about it. He can make the call over his rude behavior. He reminds me (a little) of former MD gov. Willie Don Schafer, who used to flip people off and calling them stupid (among other things).

I have a hard time envisioning Mitt Romney tolerating these kinds of antics. Christie is the anti-Romney.

If the Gov. Jindal citizenship issue is appealed to SCOTUS, they probably will punt like they did with Obama (also not a natural-born citizen). However, if they do hear the case, John Roberts could get back into Conservative graces by voting for Jindal’s eligibility.

Philly on July 2, 2012 at 9:21 PM

Okay, Ed. I suppose you have a point here. Although, I would argue that, since both Obama and the reporter who asked the off-topic question of Christie are both liberals, they are IN FACT stupid. ;’)

Okay, I know, my using an ad hominem attack only brings me down to their level for a moment. I felt like getting it off my chest.

One REAL difference here is that Obama is a serial obfuscator, while Christie is a steady record of being quite WYSIWYG. I’m just sayin’

kscheuller on July 2, 2012 at 9:27 PM

I’d say the differences between the two press conferences was obvious.

-with Gov Christie’s press conference, he berated a Libtard “journalist” who tried to derail Christie’s news conference by changing the subject.

-with B Hussein Obama’s press conference, he berated a Conservative news journalist who was trying to ask a legitimate question that dealt specifically with the topic of the news conference

-Gov Christie allowed questions that dealt with the topic of the press conference. B Hussein Obama didn’t allow ANY questions on ANY topic.

CatchAll on July 2, 2012 at 10:03 PM

Christie was irresponsible & childish.

The good thing about this is now there’s zero chance Romney will tap his shoulder.

itsnotaboutme on July 2, 2012 at 10:40 PM

The Bill Parcells of politics.

Chickyraptor on July 2, 2012 at 11:14 PM

But, you don’t need to be born in the U.S. to be VP. Only Prez.

anotherJoe on July 2, 2012 at 4:14 PM

You are very wrong. From the Constitution:

12th Amendment:
But no person constitutionally ineligible to the office of President shall be eligible to that of Vice-President of the United States.

GWB on July 3, 2012 at 10:01 AM

A Governor calling someone stupid and an idiot for asking a question off topic…WOW, real professional, real George Washingtonish. Sounds more like a British Tyrant to me.

I wonder how he would react if his Troopers talked to people that way.

dom89031 on July 3, 2012 at 10:12 AM


The reporter needed to be called out. The left will feign outrage here, but didn’t care when Obama said that, “The Boston Police acted stupidly.”

We need to lose the PC culture and start recognizing things for what they are. No more sugar coating — It should surprise no one that nothing sugar coated comes out of Gov. Christie.

EconomicNeocon on July 3, 2012 at 11:31 AM

““Are you stupid?”

Rhetorical question.

farsighted on July 3, 2012 at 1:29 PM

Not an apt comparison Mr Morrissey. Are you really that daft to think they are the same thing? Or even remotely the same circumstance?
Or is this just more of the lame begs-the-question muckraking that the junior varsity Hot Air staff seems to have a penchant for?

rayra on July 3, 2012 at 1:48 PM

Christie is badly needed in New Jersey. Jindal is badly needed in Louisiana. A number of other Republican governors are doing important work and cannot be easily replaced.

J Baustian on July 4, 2012 at 12:08 AM