Pawlenty Roll Out Confirms: Christie is Tone-Setter and Kingmaker in 2012

Governor Pawlenty may not be the most compelling or exciting presidential candidate of all time, but today’s announcement proved yet again that Governor Christie is a force to be reckoned with in 2012 regardless of whether he makes it onto the ballot.

Here’s the two biggest reasons:

  • (1) Post N.J. ’09, the GOP is High on Optimism!

Back in the summer of 2009, this website’s founder and former Blogger-in-Chief Matt Rooney observed something about the fledgling Christie campaign that few other commentators had yet to pick up on…

“I’ll let you in on a little secret. The polling may not show it, but a large part of the reason that Chris Christie is pulling ahead in the polls is because Chris’s passionate Jersey pride is positively contagious.

He speaks movingly about our state in a way that Corzine just can’t seem to identify with. Voters want to feel good about New Jersey again! Of course government and fiscal reforms are a key part of that process, but the good vibes Chris Christie projects will play an equally important role in restoring the public’s confidence in the Garden State going forward.”

An obvious point? Maybe not as much as you might think, Save Jerseyans. Obama has Americans feeling pretty crappy about themselves right now. A plurality of U.S. voters think the country is in decline. Christie’s super-confident swagger is exactly what voters want to see at this moment in history as opposed to, for instance, the stoicism of a McCain or Dole. Pawlenty’s people know this; that’s why his roll out video (watch here) is nothing but American flags, fast music, jet flyovers and rah rah GO TEAM talk versus a sober address about constitutional principles and personal responsibility.

  • (2) Christie is the Base’s Preferred Choice

This Governor has been winning or placing in every major conservative straw poll… even though he continues to vehemently deny any interest in the job (at least for now, anyway).

Americans love a leader. They really love a reluctant leader, and the more he says “no way” the more a party without a clear alternative is going to say “yes, please!” Even Tim Pawlenty’s web team thought enough to add a Christie “tag” to their YouTube roll out search terms (see below). Influence is hard to come by, but there’s only two GOP presidential endorsements that will undoubtedly earn a Fox News Alert in Election 2012: Sarah Palin and the Governor of New Jersey.