Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Potential Christie foe will meet with DGA, union leaders

Chris Christie is up for reelection in 2013, and everyone's waiting to see who'll run against him.

We know Cory Booker is out, Barbara Buono is in (read a cheat sheet on her), and now it seems State Senator Richard Codey (D) is getting serious about taking him on with The Philadelphia Inquirer reporting that he's meeting with bigs in DC today.

Codey is actively pursuing/considering/flirting with a run against Christie. He's headed to Washington on Tuesday to meet with big union leaders and the Democratic Governors Association to ask for guarantees on serious cash ($30 million) if Codey's going to take on Christie and his 70-plus percent approval ratings.

When he was state Senate president, Codey had to take over the governor's office for 14 months after Gov. James E. McGreevey resigned. That gave him high name recognition and sustained popularity, polls show. At the end of his stint, he scratched the word acting from in front of his name on the governor's office door.

Now a mere senator again, Codey still goes by the title "governor." In the book he wrote - Me, Governor? - he showed off the humor and pugnacity that could play particularly well against a funny and pugnacious incumbent.

What does this have to do with the 2016 race? Quite a bit, actually.

The tougher Christie's 2013 reelection campaign, the more he'll theoretically have to move to the middle to win, and with the base already distrusting him, that could be a serious setback.

Codey would be a tougher challenger than Buono, who sits at the left end of left, ideologically.

Update: Reader points out my brain freeze -- Christie's up in 2013.