Magazzu: Christie has a glass jaw

Quashing rumors that he would hide from the election year embrace of Gov. Jon Corzine, Cumberland County Democratic Chairman Lou Magazzu today endorsed the governor for reelection, formally taking public the unanimous recommendation of his county committee.

“We’ve had some policy differences on key initiatives, notably when he proposed to close the Department of Agriculture, which would have a disproportionate negative impact on my county,” said Magazzu. “I was also concerned that my county would be the only one not to get federal stimulus dollars, but the governor yesterday committed $52 million to Cumberland.”

Now there’s no question in the mind of the Democratic chairman, who also serves as freeholder director in this rural South Jersey county where Democrats outnumber Republicans, 24,000 to 14,000.

“I think it would be in the governor’s interest to look at South Jersey for a lieutenant governor, and I think state Sen. Steve Sweeney (D-Bridgeton) would be a terrific name,” Magazzu added.

Notwithstanding the governor’s nine-point PublicMind poll deficit, the Cumberland Democrat thinks Corzine is in a good position to beat former U.S. Attorney Chris Christie, the Republican frontrunner for governor.

“I was 18 years old when people were calling then-Gov. Brendan Byrne one-term Byrne, who was reelected,” said the Democratic Party chairman. “With that in mind, no one is really dead in New Jersey. What’s more, Chris Christie looked like he had a glass jaw at that press conference the other day. You know, former judges often make poor politicians because everybody tells them they’re right all the time to get on their good side. It’s the opposite with politicians. Everybody tells you you’re wrong when you’re a politician because they enjoy it. Being a former U.S. Attorney in this case may be the same as being a former judge. I don’t think anybody ever told Chris Christie he was wrong.

“He comes in as Mr. Clean, but with the Ashcroft and Stern stuff out there, once he gets dusted up, the race changes – and he hasn’t done well yet when someone challenges his ethics or integrity,” Magazzu added.

Magazzu: Christie has a glass jaw