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Along with eyebrow-raising support from Silicon Valley and Hollywood, Chris Christie today got a contribution from another perhaps-unexpected source: Mitt Romney. The long-time candidate reportedly gave the maximum amount to the New Jersey governor's reelection campaign, $3,800 -- or about 0.002 percent of Romney's net worth.

Politico spoke with "a source familiar with the donation", transitioning quickly from the donation to inevitable speculation about What It Means. Politico noted that the donation comes at a helpful time for Christie, who was snubbed by the Conservative Political Action Conference this week. "Some Republicans are still upset at Christie’s strong praise for Obama after the hurricane," Politico noted, adding that, "Romney has always maintained that Christie was doing what he had to do as governor."

And Romney's doing what he always did as a donor. Romney's political giving history suggests that the Christie contribution is not too far out of the ordinary. A search of Federal Election Commission filings shows that the former governor has given generously to campaigns and campaign committees, to the tune of over $775,000 over the years -- excluding the futile millions given to Romney-Ryan 2012.

The number includes:

  • $2,400 to Sen. Jim DeMint in 2009
  • $2,000 to Sen. George Allen in 2006
  • $2,500 to Jeff Flake in 2011
  • $5,000 to the Free and Strong America PAC in 2008
  • $15,000 to the Massachusetts Republican Party in 2010
  • $26,000 to the National Republican Senatorial Committee in 2006
  • $4,200 to Rick Santorum in 2006

And even …

  • $2,500 to Pawlenty for President in 2011

… in an effort to help Pawlenty retire his campaign debt.

There's no question that Romney wishes that Christie had been a little less effusive over the president last November. But if there's one lesson he learned in the aftermath of his election loss, it's that a little graciousness goes a long way. Especially if it doesn't cost that much.

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.

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