What Christie's Absence Means for the GOP Field

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With New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie officially not in the race for the Republican presidential nomination, many are now wondering who will be the candidate to beat.

Christie's announcement that he wouldn't be running for the White House ended months of speculation Tuesday.
    
Although Republicans begged him to jump in the race, in the end, Christie decided that New Jersey needed to be his focus.

"What I felt was the right decision remains the right decision. Today is not my time," Christie said.

"I have a commitment to New Jersey that I simply will not abandon," he added. "That's the promise I made to the people of this state when I took office 20 months ago."
    
Those hoping for a Christie presidential bid weren't happy with current frontrunners Texas Gov. Rick Perry or former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney.
    
Now Christie's faithful followers must find another candidate to back.
         
Meanwhile, a new CBS poll shows Perry losing support and Romney holding steady. Businessman Herman Cain is now tied for the top spot with Romney at 17 percent. Perry trails with 12 percent.
   
"I would classify Mitt Romney as plain vanilla and Rick Perry as, uh, more plain vanilla," Cain recently remarked.

"I am Haagen-Daaz black walnut ice cream," he said.

Cain appears to have broken through to the top tier, and he's using the opportunity to make the media rounds and get his message out.

"When I say I've never held office, I get applause because they're tired of politicians," he said. "They want a problem solver."
    
With Christie officially not joining the 2012 race, the GOP presidential field is likely set. Anyone wanting to enter at this point will have a tough time getting ready for the primaries, which start in less than three months.   

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Tyler James

Tyler James

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