Chris Christie thinks Putin wouldn’t test him like he does Obama, and that’s driving liberals nuts

posted at 7:21 pm on September 2, 2014 by Noah Rothman

President Barack Obama’s impotent approach to the international crises proliferating around the globe has resulted in a bipartisan barrage of criticisms directed at him and his administration, and it’s all getting to be just too much to handle for Obama’s remaining supporters.

The latest to offend the sensibilities of those for whom the Islamic State is a threat only to our ability to craft convincing moral equivalencies for their abhorrent acts is New Jersey governor and 2016 Republican presidential hopeful Chris Christie. According to a report from New York Times journalist and Christie tracker Michael Barbaro, the governor had the temerity recently to suggest that Russian President Vladimir Putin would think twice before testing his resolve in the same way he is forever testing our current commander-in-chief.

“I don’t believe, given who I am, that he would make the same judgment,” Christie said of Putin’s brazen revanchism and military land grabs in Europe. “Let’s just leave it at that.”

Barbaro is sure to let the reader know that this impractical display of bravado repulsed the urbane and erudite crowd who attended the confidential meeting of Republican activists where Christie spoke.

“One attendee described Mr. Christie’s answer as disturbingly heavy on swagger and light on substance,” Barbaro reported. “Another called it ‘uncomfortable to watch.’”

Shockingly, the reaction expressed by these two Republican activists precisely mirrored the reactions of liberal columnists and MSNBC commentators. Serendipity!

Writing on what he considered Christie’s “gaffe,” The New Republic’s Brian Beutler determined that Christie had declared his intention as president to violate Obama’s one and only rule: “Don’t do stupid s**t.”

“Say what you will about the tenets of not doing ‘stupid s**t,’ at least it’s an ethos,” Beutler wrote, in an homage to The Big Lebowski’s Walter Sobchak. “New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, by contrast, appears to have taken his organizing foreign policy principle from Travis Bickle.”

Ah, movies. Only in Hollywood, you see, does Christie-esque — let’s call it ‘audacity’ — suffice as a foreign policy. Well, in movies and in the Kremlin, too. But only those Neanderthals without a degree from Harvard’s Kennedy School would consider this a deliberative approach to foreign affairs.

Beutler was not alone in scoffing at Christie’s attempt to strike a contrast with Obama. MSNBC’s Morning Joe hosts observed that the true test of our time is the fact that the governor of the Garden State does not have a coherent policy to address Russia’s six-month-old invasion of its European neighbor.

“When he’s in Trenton, that swagger works,” Joe Scarborough said. “Outside of Trenton, you get him on foreign policy, he gets in trouble.”

“Outside of that comfort zone, a lot of people are saying it’s a mile wide and an inch deep,” the host said of Christie’s understanding of nuanced foreign affairs.

Andrea Mitchell, NBC’s resident foreign policy expert, described Christie’s display of “braggadocio” as a “kind of tough guy attitude” though “not necessarily a foreign policy.”

On her program, The Washington Post columnist Jonathan Capehart noted that The New York Times made it perfectly clear exactly how the reader should feel about Christie’s remarks. He dutifully repeated Barbaro’s conclusions. “Folks want to hear the substance and it’s clear governor Christie doesn’t have the substance yet,” Capehart said.

These are not entirely unfair criticisms. Christie has spent a fair amount of time with Republican foreign policy heavyweights like Condoleezza Rice and Henry Kissinger in the effort to bone up on global affairs. But Christie has time to learn the specifics. The president, meanwhile, has had five years to learn on the job how the world works, and it is unclear that he has internalized any of the many lessons he has been taught while in office.

In the meantime, a little bravado is not such an unwelcome thing. As the Islamic State’s beheading campaign has revealed, the American intelligentsia’s quest to redefine American foreign policy as expressly anti-George W. Bush has also sacrificed moral clarity.

The ISIS threat has cleared the post-Iraq War hangover, and America is once again warming to necessary military interventions abroad. The universal squeals from the center-left press over Christie’s comments suggests they fear that the public may also miss seeing a little old fashioned American swagger in the Oval Office.


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the fat guy still thinks he has a chance.

lol.

renalin on September 2, 2014 at 7:23 PM

renalin on September 2, 2014 at 7:23 PM

heh

cmsinaz on September 2, 2014 at 7:24 PM

Please no.

2L8 on September 2, 2014 at 7:25 PM

According to a report from New York Times journalist and Christie tracker Michael Barbaro, the governor had the temerity recently to suggest that Russian President Vladimir Putin would think twice before testing his resolve in the same way he is forever testing our current commander-in-chief.

He’d probably hug Putin.

Resist We Much on September 2, 2014 at 7:25 PM

putin would eat his lunch faster than HE can.
bully bravado is great for soundbites, useless in parts of the world like where putin operates.

dmacleo on September 2, 2014 at 7:27 PM

I’m not sure a scale would want to test him either.

crrr6 on September 2, 2014 at 7:28 PM

He’d probably hug Putin.

Resist We Much on September 2, 2014 at 7:25 PM

Wouldn’t be the first time Putin’s wrestled with a polar bear.

Aizen on September 2, 2014 at 7:28 PM

He’d probably hug Putin.

Resist We Much on September 2, 2014 at 7:25 PM

Then eat him.

redzap on September 2, 2014 at 7:29 PM

Christie would shut down the lanes between Russia and Ukraine. Behold the power of the orange cone.

rbj on September 2, 2014 at 7:30 PM

Gun grabber versus gun owner. I’ll go with the owner every time.

OT: I understand that around a DOZEN airliners are ‘missing’ from the Tripoli Airport.
Great.
Way to go King Putt and his harem (ValJer, et al) of advisors.

SMART POWER!

Right LIVerals?

Missilengr on September 2, 2014 at 7:30 PM

UFC cage match, winner gets Ukraine!

otlset on September 2, 2014 at 7:31 PM

Two words: Allen West.

ThePrez on September 2, 2014 at 7:33 PM

He’d probably hug Putin.

Resist We Much on September 2, 2014 at 7:25 PM


Or something…….

Bmore on September 2, 2014 at 7:34 PM

ROFL! What would Christie OR Obama even do? Start a nuclear war with Russia? Lol! Christie’s trapped, like most Baby Boomers, in the pre-1989 world where only the USA and USSR mattered. That world does not exist anymore.

Putin doesn’t give a damn what the USA has to say. Our foreign policy, Obama’s, isn’t an “the world bends over to Americans” policy. The EU beats the US in GDP and population. China and India are emerging 1 billion person superpowers. The world has changed.

ZachV on September 2, 2014 at 7:34 PM

“I don’t believe, given who I am, that he would make the same judgment,” Christie said of Putin’s brazen revanchism and military land grabs in Europe. “Let’s just leave it at that.”
=====================================================

New Jersey mentality eh!!

canopfor on September 2, 2014 at 7:39 PM

cmsinaz on September 2, 2014 at 7:24 PM

mika and joe just love the big don’t they? pre-bridge he was a frequent and beloved guest.

renalin on September 2, 2014 at 7:39 PM

Maybe Christie thinks that we need a little 1980′s foreign policy back. It worked well for Ronald Reagan!

Memo to Governor Christie: we could have used some of that bravado around Halloween of 2012, instead of wimpily cozying up to King Putt after Sandy left the shore in a shambles. You know, like Haley Barbour telling his state to hike up its britches after Katrina went through Mississippi. Or Bobby Jindal out on a ship trying to build a sand bar to protect his wetlands from the 2010 oil slick.

A little bravado back then, and we could have had President Romney, who knew Russia was our greatest foe, and wouldn’t have given Putin the “flexibility” to invade Ukraine.

Steve Z on September 2, 2014 at 7:40 PM

Christie is absolutely right, but in a fuller account, Putin wouldn’t test ANY theoretical American President the way he tests Obama.

The only possible exception would be Rand Paul, and Paul could meet that challenge.

The crazy thing about Putin is that he isn’t crazy at all. He knows that nothing short of a land-invasion of Germany is going to provoke a reaction from Obama worthy of being called a “response” by players of the Great Game.

More dangerously, Putin knows that absolutely nothing (possibly INCLUDING a nuclear strike on America) would provoke Secular Jesus to use nuclear weapons. His KGB shrinks have long ago informed him that using nukes runs counter to Obama’s psychological constitution.

The next two years are an insanely dangerous time to live on this planet. Unless Putin really is more timid than he’s letting on, and just having his way with a milksop party boy while he knows he can. In which case, it’s just a great time to be a Russian nationalist.

TimesUp on September 2, 2014 at 7:40 PM

Christie? Who’s that? Must the the guv of one of the 57 states.

vnvet on September 2, 2014 at 7:41 PM

given who I am

a chunky RINO?

faraway on September 2, 2014 at 7:41 PM

MeanWhile,….Puty say two weeks:

I can take Kiev in two weeks, Vladimir Putin warns European leaders

The Russian president is reported to have boasted his forces could sweep into Kiev in a fortnight if he wanted to as Nato announced it would build a new “spearhead” rapid reaction force
9:11PM BST 01 Sep 2014
**********************

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/ukraine/11069070/I-can-take-Kiev-in-two-weeks-Vladimir-Putin-warns-European-leaders.html

canopfor on September 2, 2014 at 7:42 PM

MSM leftists and the conservative commentariat agree on one thing: hating Chris Christie.

forest on September 2, 2014 at 7:42 PM

Christie would shut down the lanes between Russia and Ukraine. Behold the power of the orange cone.

rbj on September 2, 2014 at 7:30 PM

I had to laugh at that one.

Drained Brain on September 2, 2014 at 7:43 PM

Crispy Creme is irrelevant. He has no chance at winning he nomination. Why do you establishment shills keep bringing him up? It’s like you keep going back and forth from Romney to Crispy, back to Romney, now this week it’s Crispy.

Get it through your thick skulls. No Northeastern progressive, establishment WHIG is going to win the nomination.

And if you change the rules again to enable them to get the nomination, they will LOSE in the General…AGAIN.

Meople on September 2, 2014 at 7:44 PM

Obama 3 days ago: “I promise you things are much less dangerous now than they were 20 years ago”

If you can keep your head.

faraway on September 2, 2014 at 7:45 PM

Says the guy who doesn’t have the balls to stop the prosecution of Shaneen Allen.

M240H on September 2, 2014 at 7:47 PM

You won’t hear Christie bluster against the Islamists the way he thinks he can against Putin. Christie has shown his stripes vis a vis Muslims.

onlineanalyst on September 2, 2014 at 7:48 PM

Oh, yeah, Chris Christie … he bad, he bad.

Dan_NV on September 2, 2014 at 7:48 PM

Thanks, Drained Brain

rbj on September 2, 2014 at 7:49 PM

Actually don’t know why the libs would be upset at this. When Hillary starts trying to separate herself from Obama during her run she’s going to say similar things. Oh, and domestically there wouldn’t be a damned difference between Christie and Hillary.

Stray Cat on September 2, 2014 at 7:51 PM

“Test him”?
Regardless of Christie’s suitability or not, Putin’s not ‘testing’ Obama:
He’s riding him like a lonely Arab shepherd embracing his favorite sheep, behind a shady palm tree.

Whoops, was that a sexually demeaning and culturally insensitive statement?

I certainly hope so.

orangemtl on September 2, 2014 at 7:51 PM

The ISIS threat has cleared the post-Iraq War hangover, and America is once again warming to necessary military interventions abroad. The universal squeals from the center-left press over Christie’s comments suggests they fear that the public may also miss seeing a little old fashioned American swagger in the Oval Office.

I don’t think Christie can swagger. I think he would just wobbles.

Bitter Clinger on September 2, 2014 at 7:54 PM

canopfor on September 2, 2014 at 7:39 PM
Badabing, badaboom! Says Christe.

Bakokitty on September 2, 2014 at 7:55 PM

*I don’t think Christie can swagger. I think he would just wobbles.

Bitter Clinger on September 2, 2014 at 7:54 PM

Take two.

Bitter Clinger on September 2, 2014 at 7:55 PM

After news broke about Sotloff’s execution today, I wouldn’t be surprised if Obama’s first call was to…Sandy Berger (and I’m only sort of joking).

He has been warned for over a year.

He knows (not in the Troofer sense) what is coming.

He knows that it is a near-certainty that IS already has sleeper cells in the US.

He knows that he won’t be able to really get away with ‘It’s Booooosh’s fault!’ if another 09.11 (on the homeland) happens on his watch.

He knows that 73% of Americans are concerned that he lacks a strategy.

He knows – deep down – that he has made colossal miscalculations (Elect me and we’ll get along with the Muslim World because of my biography!; his Rodney King-like Cairo speech; his failure in Iraq; his support for toppling dictators that had some of these nutters under control; the Arab ‘Spring’; etc, etc, etc).

He knows that he hasn’t a strategy.

He knows that he doesn’t want to make a decision because, after all, America can ‘absorb’ another 09.11./

He knows that his base will go nuts.

He also knows that he might want to remove any ‘smoking gun’ documents so that a future 09.11 Commission will not have access to them…because history!

Resist We Much on September 2, 2014 at 7:56 PM

Oops, wrong thread!

Resist We Much on September 2, 2014 at 7:56 PM

Oh please. Fatso Chrisco is “tested” every time he waddles past the donut shop – or the ‘inflatable obama love doll’ store – and he always fails.

Pork-Chop on September 2, 2014 at 7:57 PM

He’d probably hug Putin.

Resist We Much on September 2, 2014 at 7:25 PM

Or something…….

Bmore on September 2, 2014 at 7:34 PM

Mind bleach, stat!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Bitter Clinger on September 2, 2014 at 7:57 PM

I don’t think Christie can swagger. I think he would just wobbles.

Bitter Clinger on September 2, 2014 at 7:54 PM

“Weebles wobble but they don’t fall down.”

M240H on September 2, 2014 at 7:57 PM

canopfor on September 2, 2014 at 7:42 PM
Yes, as he has his hand on the control of Europe’s natural gas to keep warm in their home this winter. Always good to know which side your bread is buttered.

Bakokitty on September 2, 2014 at 7:58 PM

Not if Christie shiws up with some Krispy Kremes.

TQM38a on September 2, 2014 at 7:59 PM

MSNBC’s Morning Joe hosts observed that

Stop watching MSNBC, HotGas.

FrankT on September 2, 2014 at 8:11 PM

As we know, all anyone has to do is wave a celebrity in front of Christie and he folds like a cheap suit.

Cindy Munford on September 2, 2014 at 8:19 PM

Christie would probably offer his Bruce Springsteen CDs as part of his negotiations with Putin.

onlineanalyst on September 2, 2014 at 8:26 PM

Well, he could sit on Putin.

whatcat on September 2, 2014 at 8:27 PM

Big tal….tough talk from a guy who supports gun-grabbing.

Bishop on September 2, 2014 at 8:37 PM

“Say what you will about the tenets of not doing ‘stupid s**t,’ at least it’s an ethos,” Beutler wrote, in an homage to The Big Lebowski’s Walter Sobchak. “New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, by contrast, appears to have taken his organizing foreign policy principle from Travis Bickle.”

Gotta be honest. I’d rather have Travis Bickle running my foreign policy than Walter Sobchak

Of course, I don’t know that Travis could get me a toe by 3 PM…

JohnGalt23 on September 2, 2014 at 8:41 PM

According to a report from New York Times journalist and Christie tracker Michael Barbaro,…

Though you repeat yourself.

For the uninitiated, the term “tracker” in the political instance is someone assigned to capture get and if necessary create from whole cloth the “Macaca Moment” from a political enemy.

Steve Eggleston on September 2, 2014 at 9:10 PM

Chris Christie thinks Putin wouldn’t test him like he does Obama, and that’s driving liberals nuts

Putin knows Christie’s a squish.

Dr. ZhivBlago on September 2, 2014 at 9:42 PM

This is exactly why we can’t dismiss any of our “candidates”…it drives the libs nuts.

Christy has his role, and that’s to keep the pot stirred, and we best don’t cannibalize our candidates…

Of all the people, the liberals fear Christy the most…they know that he can get the “crossover” vote.

They have no idea he won’t get the conservative vote, because they have no idea what a conservative is…but they know their liberal friends, and a lot of them like Christy.

I love this guy…he drives my enemy nuts, and I don’t have to support him, just allow him to exist.

right2bright on September 2, 2014 at 10:18 PM

Oh, and you guys knocking Christy, you don’t have any idea how political battles are won…no one would ever vote for James Carville, but look what he did for the democratic party, an absolute genius, but couldn’t win an election if he had to.

That is where libs have an edge…they understand these tactics…the get the Wasserman’s, Frank’s, Carville’s of political life.

right2bright on September 2, 2014 at 10:21 PM

Christie is just as deluded as obama apparently. It must have infected him during “the hug”.

Diluculo on September 2, 2014 at 10:21 PM

I was right! First Hot Air has a posting bashing Rand Paul.
My prediction was that right after a more or less positive posting of either Chris Christie, Jeb Bush or Mitt Romney would appear.

And here it is! Too funny. I suggest that you guys/gals start
mixing it up so your rino-ism is not so obvious. I can’t stop
laughing!

Amjean on September 2, 2014 at 11:22 PM

And doing nothing while IS is established and Putin is having a party is not doing stupid s***?

There is a whole lotta stupid in our current administration’s decisions. And I fear that the entire world is going to pay on some level for years for what they are not doing now. Inaction can be ‘stupid s***’ just as much as knee jerk military actions.

History defines just how stupid an administration is. Sometimes you have to wait decades for that declaration, but I’m seriously worried that we won’t have to wait that long for the results to come in on this one.

But of course, it’s business as usual for opinion journalists who snark over their bifocals. This is much bigger than individual players.

GeeWhiz on September 3, 2014 at 9:24 AM

“The importance of it is the more votes you get, the more chance you have to win,” he said bluntly. “And I don’t care who those votes come from, as long as you wind up with more than the other guy, you win, you get to govern, and that’s what our party should be focused on.”

Christie on immigration. Via Allah tweet, via CNN.

Bmore on September 5, 2014 at 9:54 AM