New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie stepped into an important national political spotlight Thursday, as he was election chairman of the Republican Governors' Association.
Christie will now be able to travel around the country campaigning for Republican gubernatorial candidates--and building goodwill, and perhaps becoming familiar with campaign donors. The Republican governors are meeting this week in Scottsdale, Arizona.
It's an important step if he's to run for the party's presidential nomination in 2016. Christie, a hero of the party's center-right wing, was overwhelmingly re-elected to a second term as governor earlier this month.
"All across America, Republican governors are doing what Washington can't: getting the big things done to move our country forward," Christie said Thursday in a statement.
The governors like to present themselves as pragmatists unbound by the ideology often strangling progress in Washington.
"We're leading with conviction, making tough decisions and getting the job done in our states," he said.
Thirty-six governorships are up for election next year, including 22 now held by Republicans and 14 held by Democrats.