Think of Chris Christie as one of 14 Republicans vying for the presidential nomination and the odds appear insurmountable. But think of him as a defensive lineman with a talent for stripping the ball from an opposing quarterback and the race now becomes far more interesting.Back in the October CNBC debate, the quarterback was Jeb Bush, who fumbled when asked whether the feds should regulate fantasy football. Mr. Christie gave the answer Mr. Bush should have: “Fantasy football? We have ISIS and al Qaeda attacking us and we’re talking about fantasy football?”Cue to Paris, where world leaders are meeting this week to discuss . . . climate change. This time the hapless quarterback is President Obama, who declares the conference a show of “resolve” against Islamic State terrorists.“This is the president once again living in his fantasy world rather than the world as it actually is,” says Mr. Christie, calling in from the campaign trail in New Hampshire. “He really believes that folks are worried about climate change when what they really care about now is the Islamic State and Syria and terrorism.”
But the terrorist attack in Paris is reordering priorities. According to a recent Suffolk University/Boston Globe survey of New Hampshire Republicans, 42% now rank terrorism and national security as their top concern, replacing jobs and the economy. This plays to the strengths of a former U.S. prosecutor who knows what a FISA court is and has used the Patriot Act to go after terrorists.