GOP capitalizes on Christie brand

The New Jersey Republican State Committee has a new way to raise money: It’s selling a line of Governor Chris Christie merchandise.The committee has launched an online store with T-shirts, sweatshirts, lapel pins and coffee mugs all with the governor’s name.State Democratic chairman John Wisniewski is critical of the sale of Christie-branded items.”He’s more interested in promoting his image,” said Wisniewski Wednesday. “He’s more interested in soothing his ego and building a national political brand than he is about governing the state of New Jersey.”Rider University political science professor Ben Dworkin doesn’t see it that way.”I don’t think it really takes away from the governing of the state. It’s unique. It’s funny,” said Dworkin. “It’s probably where America is these days so we shouldn’t be that surprised.”Rob Cressen, the GOP committee’s executive director, said there is a demand. “There had been some items popping up on the Internet that weren’t official items so we took the initiative to give people who want to show some pride in their state and their government the official Chris Christie merchandise,” said Cressen.Dworkin says he expects much of the demand for the Christie merchandise will come from Republican partisans outside of New Jersey.

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