Chris Christie got burned this week

chris christie beached moos

Story highlights

  • Christie was caught sunning himself on a beach that he had ordered closed to the public
  • The images of Christie and his family alone on the beach not open to the public affirms everything people don't like about politicians

(CNN)Here's how Chris Christie spent part of his Sunday:

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie uses the beach with his family and friends at the governor's summer house at Island Beach State Park in New Jersey on July 2. Christie is defending his use of the beach, closed to the public during New Jersey's government shutdown, saying he had previously announced his vacation plans and the media had simply "caught a politician keeping his word."
That's him and his family way down there, alone on the beach. Here's a closer look:
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie uses the beach with his family and friends at the governor's summer house at Island Beach State Park in New Jersey on July 2. Christie is defending his use of the beach, closed to the public during New Jersey's government shutdown, saying he had previously announced his vacation plans and the media had simply "caught a politician keeping his word."
Later that day, Christie took the state helicopter to Trenton to hold a press conference urging the state legislature to agree to a budget deal. The impasse, in its third day at that point, had led Christie to suspend a number of state services -- including ordering the closure of state-run beaches.
    The governor was asked by a reporter whether he had gotten any sun while staying with his family at Island Beach State Park, one of the beaches that Christie had closed. "I didn't get any sun today," Christie replied.
    Then the photos above -- courtesy of a plane hired by the Newark Star Ledger -- emerged. And Christie's horrible week began in earnest.
    The case was clear. Christie was caught sunning himself on a beach that he had ordered closed to the public -- and after he said he hadn't been sunbathing.
    All of which made his spokesman's spin all the more remarkable. "He did not get any sun," the staffer said of the governor. "He had a baseball hat on."
    He. Had. A. Baseball. Hat. On.
    Christie, despite being caught red-handed, refused to acknowledge that he had made a mistake and tried to cast the whole thing as a mountain being made out of a molehill:
    "They actually caught a politician being where he was going to be with the people he said he was going to be with, his wife and his children and their friends. So I'm sure they're going to get a Pulitzer Prize for this one because they actually proved they caught me doing what I said to do with the people I said I was going to be with."
    Talk about not getting it. The images of Christie and his family, alone amid an expanse of beach not open to the public, affirms everything that people don't like about politicians. Entitled. Hypocritical. Convinced the rules for "normal" people don't apply to them. Christie in a beach chair -- which quickly became an Internet meme -- is everything people hate about politicians wrapped into one picture.
    The one bright spot for Christie? He's so unpopular in the state already he doesn't have much farther to fall. A Quinnipiac University poll conducted last month showed Christie's job approval at just 15%, the worst approval rating for any governor in any state poll ever conducted by Quinnipiac. It'll only go lower after all the negative press Christie took this week.
    Christie's lone lifeline may be -- gulp -- Donald Trump. Despite Christie's early endorsement of The Donald, he was passed over for the vice presidential nomination and the plum Cabinet posts. He was also removed by Trump as the head of the presidential transition.
    But if Christie has a political future, it's in Washington. He's regularly mentioned as a future chief of staff or maybe even Attorney General. Those jobs seem a million miles away this week, however, as Christie at the beach became a national (and international) story.
    Chris Christie, for flying too close to the sun and getting burned, you had the Worst Week in Washington. Congrats, or something.