Christie, whose blunt-talking style dominated TV coverage as Hurricane Sandy uprooted the Garden State, insisted there's absolutely zero political calculation in his effusive praise of the Democratic president's handling of the crisis - or in their joint tour of storm damage down the Shore, which is likely to dominate headlines.
The governor said in one interview that "the president has been all over this and he deserves great credit." On Fox News Channel, he added: "If you think right now I give a damn about presidential politics, then you don't know me."
That was before it came out that Christie and Obama would tour a yet-to-be-determined swath of the Jersey Shore on Wednesday to inspect storm damage, listen to residents and thank first-responders. For the president, the sudden visit to a state that is safely in the Democratic column marks a stunning turn of events, and a calculation that a strong display of commander-in-chiefdom is worth a lot more than an umpteenth trip to Ohio.
For Christie, who faces re-election in 2013, the political calculus is trickier. Is this a four-dimensional chess move for 2016, hurting Romney so he can have a clear shot at an open White House in four years? Or is Christie just being Christie when he says he doesn't give a flying you-know-what about how this impacts Tuesday's outcome?
"I don't think you can ever rule out political calculus," said G. Terry Madonna, the Franklin & Marshall College political scientist and pollster. Still, he believes Christie is more focused on Sandy than on Mitt. "People don't have to like [Christie] to know that he's candid to a fault."
Dom Giordano, conservative host on WPHT-AM, offered Christie some advice for the Obama visit.
"It is the correct thing to do," Giordano said. "I just hope Christie is restrained in his comments on the president doing his job. Christie has looked great in doing his."
Contact Will Bunch at email@example.com or 215-854-2957. Follow him on Twitter @Will_Bunch. Read his blog at Attytood.com.