Sunday, February 7, 2016

Why is Christie more well-known in Philly than Corbett?

Should there be a Corbett Chronicles?

Why is Christie more well-known in Philly than Corbett?

Pa. Gov. Corbett at the start of the convention on Tuesday. (by Matt Katz)
Pa. Gov. Corbett at the start of the convention on Tuesday. (by Matt Katz)

Should there be a Corbett Chronicles?

I just ran into Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett on the floor of the GOP convention. Unlike Gov. Christie across the river, who has been mobbed by cameras and fans everywhere he has gone this week, Corbett stood mostly anonymous near the Pennsylvania banner when the convention began Tuesday.

I asked him about a new Inquirer Pennsylvania Poll that indicates Christie has better name recognition in his own backyard. The poll shows that Corbett is "familiar" to 79 percent of those in the Pennsylvania portion of the Philadelphia media market, while 87 percent are "familiar" with Christie.

How could that be?

"Cause your paper has put him out there more than me!" Corbett said.

He referenced this blog and the semi-regular Christie Chronicles feature in the Sunday Inquirer.

"You don’t have a column on Corbett," he said.

That's true, although we do have a great blog with the same acronym - Commonwealth Confidential - about politics in Harrisburg.

Corbett also attributed Christie's better name ID to the fact that he works in Trenton, which is actually closer to Philly than Harrisburg.

Corbett said he and Christie have been playing phone tag for two weeks. He said he doesn't need to give Christie advice for his keynote tonight -- "he knows what he's doing, and he's good on his feet." And since both men are former prosecutors, he noted that they are similar: "Just calling it the way he sees it and not that worried about how people react to it, and I think people are looking for that."  

As for Philadelphia, Corbett wanted to remind Philadelphians that he has the city in his DNA.

"You know who the last Philadelphia-born governor was?" he asked. "Me." 

You have to go back to the 1700s to find another Pennsylvania governor with the same Philly pedigree, he said. Corbett proved his Philly roots when he put Romney's name in for the nomination on the convention floor Tuesday: He noted that the first national Republican convention was in Philly in 1856.

Corbett also suggested I start chronicling him. “Come to my side,” he said.

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