Focusing yesterday on the election of a Republican Senator in the Bay State, most of those of us who blog about politics all but ignored the inauguration of a Republican Governor in the Garden State. And while many factors contributed to the victories of these two good men, it may well have been a bit of political theater which turned the tide in each of their respective races.
Recall how, in the last month of the New Jersey campaign, polls showed the race tightening? Chris Christie had not made a strong enough case for his candidacy. Then, in “a brilliant piece of retail politics,” on the Thursday before the election, the rotund Republican went on Don Imus’s radio show and joked about his weight:
“I’m pretty fat Don,” Christie declared.
“You weigh?” Imus asked.
“550 pounds,” Christie jokingly responded.
What Christie did with humor, Scott Brown did with a one liner:
Albeit in different ways, with the above remarks, each man came across as personable, the kind of guy you’d like to meet. That surely had an impact on the race. Voters eager for change in these two “blue” states could more readily embrace these Republicans.