(CNN) - Gov. Chris Christie's decision to set a special election this year to fill New Jersey's vacant Senate seat wasn't met with open arms Tuesday by a fellow Republican, former House Majority Leader Dick Armey.
Speaking to CNN's Jake Tapper on "The Lead," Armey accused the governor of trying to curry favor with Democrats by not appointing a Republican to the seat until 2014. He'll name an interim senator by next week to serve until the special election.
"All Christie has to do is appoint a Republican. That's the correct move for him to make," Armey said. "Now, I put it down as debilitating stupidity. The first rule of politics is 'Don't lose the friends you already have for the friends you're never going to get.' And if he thinks the Democrats are going to love him for being the guy who plays fair rather than takes the political opportunity he's crazy."
A Democratic governor would have "seized the opportunity" and appointed a senator from his own party, Armey argued Tuesday.
"People that run for office in politics make political decisions rather than policy decisions often commit debilitating stupidity," Armey said. "Most often it's done by the left, but frequently done by Republicans as well."
Until last year, Armey served as the chairman of the conservative, tea party-aligned group FreedomWorks.
Armey is the poster child for dysfunctional politics. Even though I disagree with a lot of what Christie does, and his political philosophy, I give him credit for trying to let the people decide their choice of senators instead of forcing them to have it his way. A rarity in politics, and far from 'stupidity'.
Imagine the temerity of a person who holds political office concluding that the right thing to do is to let the decision be made by the people who put him there in the first place. That, ladies and gentlemen, is what is called "leadership." It's the kind of mindset that is virtually non-existent in Washington, D.C. and in most of our State capitols. And absent that kind of mindset, this country is doomed in my opinion.
Dick Army was the architect behind the spontaneous "grass roots" tea party movement, and the media, who are too lazy to do research any more, ate it up, every time he proclaimed it, which was at almost every early TP event. The Republican party has been paying for that ever since, which is now regarded by many as the party of extreme nutcases.
A man who wants to make government work? Who gives the choice to the people? Armey needs to pull his head from where it is...
That's the kind of garbage that should be overheard on a live mic accidentally, not pronounced for everyone to hear his blatant political viciousness.
Chirstie needs to just go ahead and become a Democrat. I would vote for him if he ran for president as a Democrat. I would not vote for him if he ran as a Republican. We have seen what happens when we elect phonies to office. Right Obama?
Maybe Gov. Christie should consider leaving the GOP
I'm an Independent, I could vote for him as an Independent but not as a republican
I refuse to vote again for any republican
They don't call him Dick for nothing...
Could it be that Christie is a statesman and not a party man ?
Christie is doing this per Obamas direction to take focus off BENGHAZI BENGHAZI!
Dick Armey saying anyone is stup1d is classic repubtard stup1d1ty. We're talking about the guy who confused Benghazi with Bangladesh and is openly bigoted and racist. If I were Christie I would be taking his attempted insult as a compliment. When someone that dumb calls you dumb it is a good thing.
I am a registered Democrat and I will vote for the Hon. Gov. Chriistie if he were to run for President. I do not think for one second that he did this to get Democrats to vote for him. The man is alreday popular and very well liked by most NJ residents and I dare say, most Americans. Getting re-elected in NJ would have been a cake walk for Gov. Christie with or without this.
Dick Armey calling anyone stupid is really funny. Go back to your goats Dick, they will keep loving you, even when you feed them swill. They still get fed,right?
The correct move? He must be referring to that not-so-popular new app called "Angry Elephants".
Well if he had any thoughts of running for President he just killed that.
A special Election – will cost Millions, an Appointment nothing.
I love watching the GOP hyenas devour each other! Christie is a better democrat than many of our so-called "democratic" senators! The GOP will have his head on a stick before you can say "legitimate rape".
I did not vote for Christie, and probably won't in November. However, one cannot help but respect his sense of decency. It is painfully obvious that Mr. Armey and others of his ilk in the Republican party are so intent in trying to discredit an elected president that they will grasp at any straws to accomplish this. Shame on you Mr. Armey!
I LOOOOOVE the Greed Old Party! Keep running your party towards irrelevance you old curmudgeons.
I'm going to guess he chose his own name.
"Party before country", says Armey! Armey is the one who is stupid beyond all comprehension. He wants Christie to be as partisan, obstructive and destructive as the rest of the GOP. It is not going to happen.
He's courting centrist voters who will decided the 2016 election, not hard-line Republicans or Democrats who are never going to change their minds. Had the GOP done a better job with those swing votes, they would have the presidency now.
Dick Armey is what is wrong with politics, Christie is what is right with politics. Armey wants to WIN for the republicans so they can have an other senator. Christie wants to give the PEOPLE of NJ the say in who represents them at the earliest feasible time. Armey wants to deny the people of NJ their fair representation because he knows it will be a democrat. Armey shows contempt for the people, and the principles on which our nation was founded. I may hate that red states elect republicans, I may hate republican policies and scream until I am blue in the face (no pun intended) trying to convince others not to vote for conservatives but I would never attempted to deny them the right to vote and elect their representatives.
Christie just notched another rung on his climb to my vote in 2016, he's not there yet, but he's closer every day.
Once again Christie makes the right decision, and once again his party attacks him for it.
The mainstream GOP never stops embarrassing itself.
More proof that when Republicans claim they are doing "what's best for America", what they mean is, "what's good for the Republican Party". I'm not good with that, and I'm part of the majority voice.
America may be finally ready for what is fair as opposed to partisanship. What a concept. In the next election when the republican presidential hopefuls are eliminated one by one and all that is remaining is Christy, Armey will be be singing his praises. Same thing happened in 2012. At first Romney was hated by the right. Then they couldn't say enough nice things about him after all the loons had been eliminated (Bachman, Perry, Santorum......)