New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, fresh off his "Beachgate" controversy, has been tapped to guest host at the nation's leading sports-radio station in New York City next week — and speculation is that it's really a two-day "audition" for a full-time gig.
Christie will sub Monday and Tuesday afternoon for Mike Francesa, the top personality at WFAN, 660 AM and 101.9 FM.
And The Bergen Record reports his time behind the mic "could be audition days as Francesa is set to leave the station once his contract ends later this year."
Christie will be heard on the air from 2 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. along with Evan Roberts, a veteran WFAN host.
In February, WFAN program director Mark Chernoff told The Record that he would consider hiring Christie when his gubernatorial term ends next January, adding that "if he's interested and we're interested, it's worth pursuing."
Christie is no stranger to WFAN, having been a frequent guest on its "Boomer and Carton" morning show. But radio insiders say they're not sure whether listeners, especially those in New Jersey where Christie's popularity numbers are at an all-time low, will tune in.
"He certainly know sports and he's been on WFAN many times, but you've got to wonder if all of the controversy that has dogged him in New Jersey will translate into the kind of ratings that are expected in the New York area market," one broadcasting veteran told Newsmax.
Christie was savaged by residents in the Garden State after he closed state beaches over the Fourth of July weekend because of a budget impasse.
He then was photographed with his family relaxing on the beach of a private residence kept for governors, telling seething sun-worshipers, "It's just the way it goes. Run for governor and then you can have the residence."
Christie also was mired in the "Bridgegate scandal," in which his top aides orchestrated a major traffic jam at the George Washington Bridge as political payback for a local mayor who bucked supporting the governor.
If Christie were to score Francesa's job, he'd have big shoes to fill. In 2014, Francesa, earned the No. 8 spot on the New York Daily News' list of the "50 Most Powerful People in New York Sports."
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