Let Gov. Christie have his freedom
Gov. Chris Christie is a like a boxer — broad shoulders, wide stance and quick to the punch. With that comes the need for great agility. In order to be successful in a blue-leaning state, Christie needs to be flexible, especially when the collective wallet is upturned and empty. Mandating that he broadcast his location, as state Sen. Loretta Weinberg (D-37) seeks to do with a proposed bill, is confusing the issue in a vain attempt to rally the troops.
There is no precedent, necessity nor genuine need for Christie to inform everyone down the line of government and the common citizens of his whereabouts. Asking him to do so is nothing short of “Access Hollywood” for news junkies. Sure, Weinberg would love to chain Christie with a GPS device and Twitter feed, but that only seeks to restrain the power of our executive in a time of increasing dissatisfaction with government.
While Christie does not refrain from business trips, they are just as advertised — for business. This bill would limit the number of individuals Christie would be able to access. Personal and political opinions aside, I don’t believe anyone can fault Christie for a lack of commitment.
Christie, apart from being responsible and highly successful, is also more in touch with the common voter than most senior public officers. This bill would only serve to hinder his ability to act quickly if he would be required to submit his waking activities in triplicate. His schedule is already intelligently prioritized between his family and office, even more so now after he suffered from the previous embarrassment of paying a visit to his son’s baseball game in a helicopter earlier this year.
As a general rule, I wouldn’t expect more from a public official than you would normally expect from a significant other, mainly in terms of personal space. So aside from some of the hedonistic fantasies we might all have from time to time, no one enjoys having their freedom of movement taken away from them. The bill is a farce, albeit a weak one, to trump up voter sympathy for a debate of no substance. Christie may not be a private citizen any longer, but he isn’t a first-class private on guard duty, and he is not a dog.
If for some reason this bill is a hit, I imagine a Christie clad in pajamas slinking out of his bedroom down a chain of knotted sheets and into a nearby bush as senators stalk from their parked Jaguars. Frankly, due to the previous performance of our CEO, I can take rest knowing that Christie knows how to best manage his free time. Just give him a walkie-talkie he can turn off.
Stephan Liszewski is a School of Arts and Sciences senior majoring in history and political science.