Buried deep inside a long Politico piece about New Jersey Governor Chris Christie’s decision to appoint Jeff Chiesa to temporarily serve in the Senate is a sharp jab against the governor by Sen. Rand Paul,R-Ky. Christie and Paul are potential rivals for the Republican presidential nomination in 2016.
The Politico story is about whether Chiesa is truly independent or just a proxy for Christie. The most critical take on Christie’s pick noted in the article comes from Paul:
The scrutiny of Chiesa’s votes vis-a-vis his close ties to Christie comes as some potential rivals are criticizing the New Jersey governor’s handling of the Lautenberg seat. They say the decision to schedule a special election just a couple weeks before his November general election looks to conservatives like it was intended to help Christie’s reelection campaign — at the expense of New Jersey taxpayers.
“I think when sometimes when you do things and the appearances are you’ve done them simply for your benefit, and not the party’s benefit, that may be a problem,” said Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky, a potential 2016 GOP candidate. “I think the fact that he didn’t appoint somebody for a two-year period, and he set up a different election for three weeks before that’s going to cost $25 million, I think some people will say that doesn’t seem to be very conservative.” (Emphasis added.)