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Don't Get Too Excited About Christie's Politics of Style, Not Substance

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Source: The Nation

Republican New Jersey Governor Chris Christie at his election night party in Asbury Park, New Jersey. (Reuters/Mike Segar)

Chris Christie is ready for his close-up.

And if all that we are allowed to learn from Tuesday's voting in cities and states across the nation is what a particularly self-absorbed presidential prospect wants us to talk about, then that is the only permissible takeaway from the 2013 election.

Forget about the transformational election of progressive Democrat Bill de Blasio as mayor of the nation's largest city. Forget about the election of a labor champion, Marty Walsh, as mayor of Boston. Forget about the overwhelming vote of voters in Portland, Maine, to legalize marijuana.

Forget that the most historic result of the night came in Virginia.

Just do what Chris Christie says and talk about Chris Christie -- at least until his ridiculous reach for the Republican presidential nomination crashes and burns after he yells at the first teacher in Iowa.

Or get serious enough to recognize that Christie's super-hyped victory on Tuesday was all about style -- not substance.

The substantial result on Tuesday was that Democrats ran exceptionally well in the battleground state of Virginia. How well? This year's election took place when a Democratic president was serving his second four-year term. The last time Democrats won the governorship of Virginia during the second four-year term of a president of their party, that president was Franklin Delano Roosevelt.

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John Nichols, a pioneering political blogger, has written the Online Beat since 1999. His posts have been circulated internationally, quoted in numerous books and mentioned in debates on the floor of Congress.

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