The keynote speech at a party convention has recently been given to those who the party thinks could lead them to the future. In 2004, a candidate for Senate named Barack Obama, received plenty of high praise for his stirring speech that may very well be his most-remembered.
The keynote speech is often a springboard for national office and it appears that Republican New Jersey Governor Chris Christie is eyeballing the slot.
Christie, an early and vocal surrogate for presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney, has been one of the rising stars in the party ever since he beat incumbent Jon Corzine in 2009. Christie, whose “straight talking” method of speaking has been often compared to bullying, has a big fanbase on the right. He has demolished unions, called out the state’s teachers and been a loud voice for cutting income taxes.
So naturally there has been some talk that Christie could wind up being the running mate for Romney this November. But it always appeared the Garden State Governor had his eye on one position: The Presidency. A well-received speech at the Republican National Convention could very well thrust Christie into the front-runner slot for 2016 if Mitt Romney loses.
But I still have my doubts about a national Christie campaign. His style of speaking can excite the partisan right, but it can a be real turn-off to independent voters. Also, giving New Jersey’s relatively solid blue hue, he will be in for a potentially tough re-election fight in 2013. Christie has built strong friendships amongst the right, yes, but he also has very strong enemies in the union crowd.