Sen. Barbara Buono (D., Middlesex), the main challenger to Gov. Christie in November, did her first national TV appearance last night on MSNBC -- getting five minutes for two answers that essentially served as the introduction to a candidate who suffers from little name recognition.
This is an important moment for Buono. To close the wide gap between her and Christie she's going to need the money that comes from the national liberals who watch MNSBC -- and the name ID from all those New Jerseyans who get their news from TV, not local papers (boo).
But MSNBC, the most liberal of the cable TV news stations, won't necessarily give Buono an easy ride to November. Christie gets plenty of favorable coverage on this network, thanks to something akin to hero worship on the MSNBC morning show, "Morning Joe." The hosts air snippets of his videos, praise his speeches and declare their "love." Christie has done more interviews on the liberal peacock than he has on conservative FOX.
Just yesterday, the morning of Buono's interview, host Joe Scarborough pushed Christie's name as a 2016 candidate for president. Buono's name was never mentioned, but the hosts spent several minutes discussing a Christie video released by the governor's office.