Stateside,  Vote 2016

Chris! Chris! Chris!

He once appeared to be the most formidable Republican challenger to Hillary Clinton in 2016, but as New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie becomes the 14th declared candidate for the GOP nomination, he seems more of an afterthought.

The Republican Right has been out for his blood ever since they blamed him (unfairly) for throwing the 2012 election to President Obama when he effusively praised and hosted the president after Hurricane Sandy ravaged the Jersey shore just a few days before the election.

And some may still recall with resentment his reaction when he was denounced for appointing a Muslim lawyer as a state judge.

But if anything has undercut his chances for winning the nomination, it’s the continuing Bridgegate scandal– immortalized in song by Jimmy Fallon and Christie’s musical idol Bruce Springsteen:

In fact two aides to Christie have been indicted in the scandal (a case of old-fashioned political payback), a political ally has pleaded guilty, and the case is not yet closed.

Tom Moran, who has covered Christie for 14 years as a reporter for The Newark Star-Ledger, pointed this out in an enumeration of some of the shameless lies Christie has told in his political career.

Don’t misunderstand me. They all lie, and I get that. But Christie does it with such audacity, and such frequency, that he stands out.

Christie’s raw political skill can’t be discounted. But like many another Republican candidate, his moment has probably passed.