New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie used to be everyone's favorite Republican and the conventional wisdom's pick to win the GOP's presidential nomination in 2016. Now, Christie's poll numbers are falling and his White House prospects, once seemingly just within his reach, are fading further with each passing day. It's amazing what a few weeks' time can do.
Here's the latest in Christie's world:
- A report from Fox Business' Charles Gasparino in the New York Post says that Christie's real base — Wall Street Republicans and other conservative members of the 1 percent — is finally starting to give up hope that the governor will be able to bounce back and reclaim his former spot as the top GOP contender for 2016. Gasparino says that in his conversations with top GOP fundraisers on Wall Street, he's hearing that a consensus is starting to develop: Even if Christie himself is never directly implicated in the Bridgegate scandal, the bad press may be too much for the would-be candidate to overcome. Their new savior? Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush.
- The Star-Ledger editorial board slams Christie for allowing the expiration of a federal government grant intended to help New Jerseyans enroll for health insurance through Obamacare.
- It turns out David Wildstein — the Port Authority Christie appointee who is facing legal problems for his direct role in Bridgegate — chose a lawyer who has got a history with New Jersey's governor. The Star-Ledger reports that Wildstein's counsel, Alan Zegas, has previously quarreled with Christie in the press, written negative columns about him, and generally criticized him without fear or hesitation. The question that arises is: Was Wildstein sending a warning sign to his former boss by choosing frequent antagonist Zegas as his lawyer?
- Randy Mastro, who is running Christie's "internal investigation" into the Bridgegate scandal, has withdrawn from being counsel to the Port Authority on a separate matter. Mastro did so in a quiet manner and declined to comment further, but the Star-Ledger reports many had already been whispering that Mastro's handling of both cases created a potential conflict of interest.