If there's one thing I know about politics it's this: if a politician says black, it's white. Up, it's down. And if he says he's not running, that usually means he is. And in the case of New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, there's a far greater likelihood that no means yes. And soon. As uber-conservative Bill Kristol said over the weekend, Christie "is a big man for a big job."
Right now the Republican leadership is courting Christie more relentlessly and shamelessly than I did Susie Smith in the 10th grade. They're beside themselves. They're like Jon Favreau in "Swingers" leaving a zillion pathetic "I love you" messages on his answering machine. They're kissing his ass more than the GOP sucks up to corporate America. And I believe it's working.
Imagine what they're saying: "Chris, this is your shot, man. The White House is yours if you want it. Bachmann's gone, Perry's finished, and even if Palin enters the race we know she'll say something horribly offensive and stupid within minutes and implode. You know we can't stand Romney. This guy's as fake as his hair color. You're the real deal. You're who voters want. Think of the narrative: a blue collar kid from Newark grows up to be president of the Unites States! How can you pass this up? Look at Obama's numbers. Look at the economy. Look at unemployment. Look at your record in New Jersey and how much budget-busting cred you have. A straight-shootin' workin' man for the people! You'll be like Fiorello LaGuardia, only bigger. And by bigger we of course mean taller. Look, we promise you this: if you enter the race we will shower you with gobs of money and support, and we guarantee you will win the nomination. There's nothing to stop you. And then it's just a short skip into the Oval Office over a weak, unpopular Obama. So whattya say, Mr. President!?"
And if you're Christie, as I've been predicting for many months now, this seductive entreaty is, ultimately, gonna be too attractive to pass up.