Gov. Chris Christie will have the nation’s attention this evening as he delivers the keynote address at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, FL.
Network coverage of the Republican National Convention begins at 10 p.m. tonight. Christie is scheduled to speak at 10:30 p.m. The speech will be carried live across the national networks—ABC, CBS, NBC—plus on CNN, Fox News, PBS and NJTV.
While Christie hasn’t released an advance copy of the speech, he left clues during a long morning of talk show interviews. On Today, Christie told Matt Lauer, “I’ll use New Jersey as an illustrative experience about what can happen if you stick by your principles and look for ways to solve problems.”
Fox News reports that Christie will “make the case for GOP economic policies and Romney as the fixer,” while letting Mitt Romney’s wife, Ann, also speaking tonight, humanize the GOP presidential candidate. The Washington Post theorizes Christie will use the speech to “hammer President Obama on accusations of mismanaging the country and the economy.”
The speech’s significance isn’t in doubt, but it’s unclear which Christie will show up: the governor who slams the opposition or the one who advocates crossing party lines to solve problems. Either way, tonight the nation will get a taste of what New Jerseyans are already familiar with—a governor who speaks his mind with a and . (For those unfamiliar with Christie’s style, The Washington Post breaks down the governor’s approach to important speeches, saying “You will not be bored or not entertained by Chris Christie.”)
After he was passed over for the vice presidential spot in favor of Paul Ryan, Christie was tapped earlier this month to give the keynote, usually given to mover and shaker in the party. Some convention keynote speakers use the platform to launch their national political aspirations, as several pundits believe Christie may do, especially if Romney doesn’t win the White House. Others who give the keynote (2008 GOP speaker Zell Miller, anyone?) tend to quietly fizzle on the national political scene.