Matt Miller - The Archives

Chris Christie is NOT a truthteller
The Washington Post, August 28, 2012

Is there anything worse than someone being obnoxiously boastful about a quality when it can easily be demonstrated he doesn't possess it? Chris Christie insists, declares, brags and (more aggressively than perhaps anyone ever has) physically inflicts on us his "truthtelling." But it's phony, phony, phony.

I hate to be a broken record, but political courage means telling your base what it doesn't want to hear. For Republicans, that means acknowledging the truth that taxes must rise above their historic levels as the boomers age and we double the number of people on Social Security and Medicare. You cannot qualify as a truthteller without speaking this truth. Christie fails this test. Paul Ryan fails this test. So does the rest of the GOP.

Republicans will tell only those truths that do not require abandoning the tax issue as a political club. But the idea of perennial tax cuts cannot be sustained any longer because of simple math and demographics. Once you realize this is the case, Christie's entire truthier-than-thou tone and self-congratulatory demeanor become incredibly off-putting. I'm still waiting for the ambitious political truthteller who really does tell the truth.