If New Jersey Governor Chris Christie decides to run for the Republican presidential nomination, he faces a few big hurdles. With only three months before the first primaries, he’s in a tight race to establish an organizational presence in Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina, to say nothing of actual campaigning. In addition, Christie will have to draw donors to his presidential bid—a tough prospect at this stage of the game—and secure endorsements, which aren’t as plentiful as they once were. It doesn’t help either that, as Nate Silver points out, late entrants to the presidential contest are rarely successful.

With all of that said, if Christie is interested in the presidency, and believes that he could win, then he should jump in the race. “You gotta go when you’re hot,“ says Republican consultant Mark McKinnon in The Daily Beast, ”Ask Barack Obama. Yes, there are all the obvious logistical challenges. But getting in this late, Christie creates an instant media tsunami and could surf his way through the first primaries on the late-breaking strength of the wave."

The best time to run is always now, and that’s especially true this year, with a bad economy, a weakened president and a presumptive nominee—Mitt Romney—with his fair share of vulnerabilities. Without question, Christie’s candidacy is a long shot, but it’s not crazy, and if he wants the nomination, then Christie should go for it.