Christie at the Beach Meme Saves Fourth of July

Chris Christie was almost the Grinch who stole July 4. But a miracle happened. The New Jersey Governor’s social media presence grew three sizes and the merry sound of mocking laughter saved the holiday.

When July began, New Jersey was staring down the barrel of a government shutdown. Christie, the least popular governor in America, was deadlocked with the Garden State’s legislature over the budget. When the budget didn’t pass, the state shut down. State employees went unpaid and state beaches closed.

One state-controlled stretch of sand went conspicuously occupied, however. As captured by an camera, Christie and company had a whale of a time on the beach outside the governor’s summer mansion. The image of the combative and disliked governor spread through social media and was hilariously repurposed in a stream of ‘shopped images. Here are highlights.