A couple of weeks ago, former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) was on ABC News’ “This Week” program causing a lot of pain for Democrats on the set by pointing out the real reason President Biden was attacking Georgia’s new voting law using loaded language like “Jim Crow laws.”
“He’s lying about this bill. He’s lying to the American people about it to cause the raging fire he said he was going to put out. I’m very disappointed,” Christie said at the time.
A week later, Christie was dropping some inconvenient truths about Biden again on the Sunday program, this time over his bloated infrastructure plan and on how little of it has to do with actual infrastructure.
The segment in question featured anchor/host and former President Clinton senior adviser George Stephanopoulos, fellow Democrat and former Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, and two reporters: ABC News congressional correspondent Rachel Scott and the NYT’s Maggie Haberman. So obviously the deck was stacked against Christie, but he more than held his own.
After Emanuel claimed, without evidence, that Biden’s plan was “very, very popular” with the American people, “including about a third of the Republican Party” and then accused Republicans of “trying to divert everything out of way from the actual discussion of this package,” Christie countered him by getting into the meat of Biden’s proposal and calling it out for what it was:
CHRISTIE: I want us to look closely at the package. You cannot call a $400 billion plan to force unionization in states to say that taking care of increasing Medicaid payments in states is infrastructure. Now language does matter. We learned that in the last four years. How you use it and what you say, and I said last week that the president’s not telling the truth, and he’s not telling the truth about the infrastructure package.
This is the care economy. This is care infrastructure. It’s baloney. And so what’s going to happen is the president right now is in the first 100 days and he’s going to have that soothing persona and all the rest of it, but when people start to look at what he’s really doing, George, those moderate voters —
STEPHANOPOULOS: But even the things you just mentioned right there are popular. People would love to have Medicaid increase —
EMANUEL: They would like their grandparents to be taken care of.
CHRISTIE: So here’s what’s not popular. Lying is not popular. It’s not infrastructure, George. No, no. No, no —
Stephanopoulos took great offense at Christie using the word “lie” to accurately describe what Biden was doing.
“Do you really want to use the word lie there? I mean, come on,” Stephanopoulos pouted.
But Christie was not persuaded:
CHRISTIE: Let’s just be fair here. If Donald Trump had come out and called a dog a cat, which is what Joe Biden’s doing, we would be outraged by the fact that he’s lying. But with Joe Biden, somehow it’s like, oh well, come on, it’s Joe. No, no, no, no. It’s not true.
If he wants to make the case, George, for increased Medicaid payments and connect it to those payments, mandatorily using SEIU union members, let him make that case and see if he gets it passed. I know he won’t, and the people around this table, whether they’ll say it or not, they know it won’t pass either.
Watch Christie drop the hammer and then Stephanopoulos’ reaction to it below:
Christie: “If Donald Trump and called a dog a cat… we would be outraged.” pic.twitter.com/7Yy4P96Jkh
— This Week (@ThisWeekABC) April 11, 2021
Christie later took to Twitter to emphasize his point that Biden needed to be honest with the American people for a change:
President Biden needs to level with the American people about the fact that his “infrastructure” package is a $2.25 trillion liberal wish list with only about 25% being spent on traditional infrastructure like roads, bridges, tunnels and rails. Be honest with us Mr. President. https://t.co/du32oGCAsA
— Governor Christie (@GovChristie) April 11, 2021
At this rate, Christie is burning Stephanopoulos and the other guests on the show so bad that I wouldn’t be surprised if at some point he “disappeared” from the show for a while. Because pointing out that the supposed unifier in chief is a chronic liar and flamethrower does not go over well in Democratic circles.
But back to the infrastructure plan, seeing as Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin has signaled that he and a number of other Senate Democrats are not on board with the package as it stands now — especially the proposed hiking of the corporate tax rate in the middle of a pandemic — Biden will not be able to blame Republicans alone for the stalemate over his plan, though I’m sure he’ll certainly try.
As they say, stay tuned…