Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan took to Twitter Sunday to poke fun at New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie after his beloved Dallas Cowboys lost in dramatic fashion to the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field. Per usual, Christie sat next to Cowboys team owner Jerry Jones in a luxury box as Dallas lost.
The Cowboys put forth a strong effort, but lost by a score of 26-21 after officials overturned Dallas wide receiver Dez Bryant’s juggling catch that would have resulted in a go-ahead touchdown. Christie’s exuberant reaction to the non-catch quickly became a target of mockery on social media, with Ryan leading the charge. “[Gov. Christie], do you need a hug now? #GoPackGo #WinninginWisco,” Ryan tweeted alongside a photo of his family decked out in Packers gear.
— Paul Ryan (@PRyan) January 11, 2015
Ryan’s tweet came days after Wisconsin Gov. and fellow Packers fan Scott Walker posted a similar jab at Christie. “This is the type of owner I’ll be looking to hug after a #Packers win on Sunday,” wrote Walker -- a possible rival of Christie's for the 2016 Republican nomination -- alongside a photo of a Packers fan in a reference to Green Bay’s status as the NFL’s only publicly owned franchise.
Christie took Walker’s tweet in stride last Wednesday. “[Gov. Walker] don’t worry… there are enough awkward hugs to go around,” Christie tweeted, along with a Photoshopped image of him and Walker locked in an embrace.
A lifelong Cowboys fan, Christie sat alongside Jones in the owner’s box at each of Dallas’ playoff games, drawing scorn from political pundits and fans of New Jersey’s hometown New York Giants (and Philadelphia Eagles) in the process. In particular, the hug Christie shared with Jones and his son after the Cowboys defeated the Detroit Lions in the NFC Wild Card round generated countless memes and jokes on the Internet.
Christie’s Cowboys fandom had political implications, as well. Christie let Jones to pay for his tickets and travel to Dallas after the New Jersey governor supported the awarding of a Port Authority contract to a firm owned by Jones. New Jersey lawmakers are considering a formal investigation into whether Christie’s acceptance of the gifts constituted a violation of state laws against public officials receiving such treatment.