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Chris Christie

Elected as Governor of New Jersey in 2009 and subsequently re-elected in 2013, Chris Christie (R-NJ) is perhaps best known as a straight-talker from Jersey who isn’t afraid to speak his mind and call it like he sees it.

Christie’s is a graduate of the University of Delaware, and Seton Hall University School of Law. After graduating with his law degree Christie joined a New Jersey law firm, where he became partner in 1993 and continued practicing until he became U.S. Attorney in 2002. Prior to serving as U.S. Attorney in New Jersey, Christie was elected as a county legislator in Morris County, serving from 1995 to 1998. From 1999 to 2001, Christie was a registered lobbyist in New Jersey.

Since arriving on the national scene Christie has had a tumultuous time, to say the least. Urged to run for President by many in 2012, Christie elected not to run against incumbent President Barack Obama. As a popular sitting Governor Christie did become an important surrogate for Governor Mitt Romney, the Republican Presidential Nominee. The tragedy brought by Hurricane Sandy when it hit New Jersey weeks before the election brought President Obama to New Jersey for a photo opportunity with Christie, one which many Republican voters still remember. Then in September 2013, for alleged political retribution, certain aides to Governor Christie ordered unnecessary lane closures on the George Washington Bridge in Fort Lee, New Jersey. There is to date no evidence of any wrongdoing or knowledge on the part of Christie, but the damage to his reputation and Presidential campaign was quite real.

Despite Christie’s fall from frontrunner to one undercard debate, as of this writing Christie is enjoying a surge in the polls in New Hampshire and seems to be employing an all-in strategy in the first in the nation primary.

On the Issues

As the Chief Executive Officer of a State and a former federal prosecutor, Governor Chris Christie has little experience with intellectual property or technology issues. Having said that, a review of Christie’s website shows a great deal more specific policy information than virtually any other candidate in the race. Christie has taken positions on criminal justice reform, social security and Medicare reform, national defense, foreign policy, education and the economy.

As part of Christie’s economic plan he is in favor of pro-growth tax reform, as are all the Republican candidates. But Christie does not stop there; he also talks about getting regulation under control (a favorite Republican talking point) and a national energy strategy. Christie also wants to ensure that America is the home of innovation. To do this will require investments in research and development, but that liquidity must also return to capital markets. His website explains:

America has for many years had the deepest, most liquid, most transparent capital markets in the world. Yet America is now losing its edge, in part due to the unintended consequences of regulation. Reform which makes it easier for young high growth companies to access the capital markets is essential. To further encourage private sector innovation, the R&D tax credit should be made permanent as part of broader tax reform.

Although he doesn’t use the word “patent” it would seem that he is describing the plight of start-ups being locked out of the capital markets because they cannot receive patents and/or because the patents they are able to receive from the United States Patent and Trademark Office are no longer worth much, if anything, as the result of recent Supreme Court decisions and Congressional action.