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Does the traffic scandal block Chris Christie's lane to the White House?

Chris Christie after apologizing to the mayor harmed by the traffic scandal.
Chris Christie after apologizing to the mayor harmed by the traffic scandal.
Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Governor Chris Christie (R-New Jersey) has impressed independents, and some on the right, with his no-nonsense leadership style as well as the ability to reach across the aisle and get things done; being elected and re-elected in the traditionally blue state of New Jersey. He runs his administration like the ancient Aztecs did; firm but friendly. In fact, in recent poling, Christie has been the favored Republican candidate for a 2016 White House run in almost all of the preliminary polling.

Recently, Gov. Christie has been on the fast track; that is until a few days ago. The semi-scandal that broke the national consciousness on Wednesday has seemingly engulfed the biggest name in the faction of the Republican Party that is not ultra-conservative: Chris Christie.

The New York Times originally broke the story with a series of documents showing that, at the very least, Christie’s staff was involved in lane closures in an attempt to hurt the mayor of Ft. Lee, NJ because he had not supported Christie’s re-election bid.

The Democrats are playing up the story with the narrative that this proves Christie isn’t as bipartisan as he is made out to be. This act of seemingly childish retribution, which is clearly unheard of in politics, is the proof in the not-so-purple pudding of Christie’s brash persona.

While the Democratic Party is all but rolling out the red carpet leading straight to the front door of the White House for Hillary Clinton, a few observations come to mind. The first, and not least of which, is that this scandal seems to have garnered quite a bit of media attention for something that, while inconvenient, is certainly not life or death.

Keep in mind, after the Benghazi attacks, where four American’s were killed on September 11th in a massive gunfight that lasted for hours and involved RPG’s, the media hardly wanted to touch it. In contrast, if the staff of a Republican Governor, who may or may not have been involved, plots to shut down a tunnel and inconvenience people for political reasons, there is massive outcry.

Now, for the sake of brevity, let’s pretend this doesn’t speak to a greater problem forming within the American populous. What it does do, however, is bring out some refreshing qualities that an in-your-face guy like Christie brings to the table; starkly contrasting certain leadership we currently have. Christie, in response to this story, immediately fired the person responsible and started holding people accountable, admitting the error, and moving to take action to fix it.

If Christie truly wasn’t involved, then this sort of take action, pragmatic approach is exactly the opposite of the we-are-going-to-launch-a-full-investigation-and-do-nothing approach taken by the current administration. A quick reminder: Benghazi, IRS scandal, HHS website debacle, and many other hiccups have held an effective total of zero people accountable in any real, meaningful way.

On the flip side, if Christie is proven to be lying and was involved, then Mrs. Clinton better start getting her right hand ready for that White House Bible.