Columnist Ponnuru: Christie Victory a Roadmap for GOP

Thursday, 07 Nov 2013 05:06 PM

By Bill Hoffmann

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Republicans should study New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie's re-election to learn how their party can begin winning again, according to Ramesh Ponnuru, a Bloomberg columnist and senior editor at National Review.

"Christie was able to win a huge re-election in a deep blue state even though he is a pro-lifer and an opponent of same-sex marriage … and the first pro-lifer to be the governor of New Jersey since Roe v. Wade came down," Ponnuru told "The Steve Malzberg Show" on Newsmax TV.

Story continues below video.

"That seems to me a signal [of] success … You may not want to give him the Republican nomination on a platter, but that's something you should learn and study."

Ponnuru acknowledges Christie's swift reaction to the devastation caused by Superstorm Sandy is a factor in his vast popularity and will help him if he seeks the GOP nomination for president in 2016.

"It played a role. It was a subset of being an effective governor who is responsive to the concerns of his constituents and is not seen as somebody who puts his own ideological agenda before those things," he said.

"Not every state is going to have a natural disaster of that scale but that kind of responsivity is going to play well almost anywhere.

Ponnuru blames Ken Cuccinelli himself for losing his hard-fought Virginia governor's race to Democrat Terry McAuliffe.

"You never saw ads from Cuccinelli pushing back on the endless stream of 'War on Women' ads from the Democrats. None of them saying … 'I understand not everybody is [a pro-life advocate] but I am going to try to protect unborn life and that's important. And, by the way, Terry McAuliffe is a pro-abortion extremist.'

"You just saw nothing on that along those lines from the Cuccinelli ad makers."

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