The governor sure can keep you guessing. On any given day, it's never quite clear which Chris Christie is going to show up.

Will it be the budding national Republican star careful not to do or say anything that would irk the GOP's right wing?

Or will it be the candidate for re-election in New Jersey, where voters have long preferred moderates, if not liberals, on social issues.

It was clear in October which Chris Christie vetoed the Good Samaritan Emergency Response Act, which called for limited immunity for people seeking medical help in the event of a drug overdose.

The veto came at the height of the race for president when Christie was busy burnishing his conservative credentials. The governor said the bill didn't consider deterrence or public safety regarding the "rampant proliferation of drug distribution and use." In other words, the bill was soft on druggies.

But this week, with his re-election campaign in New Jersey ratcheting up, Christie called for the Legislature to pass an almost identical immunity bill, with only minor changes that amounted to window-dressing.

The Legislature complied. The new bill is a good one. Christie and lawmakers deserve praise for getting it done. But the unusual legislative procedure and the speed with which the new measure was approved feel a little like whiplash. Indeed, Christie quickly signed the bill Thursday with much fanfare and Jon Bon Jovi, whose daughter suffered a nonfatal heroin overdose, at his side.

The Legislature had sent Christie a bill making naloxone, an approved treatment for drug overdoses, more readily available in medical emergencies. Christie conditionally vetoed that bill on Monday, saying the measure should include much of the language in the original Good Samaritan Emergency Response Act. The Senate immediately went into emergency session and approved Christie's changes; the Assembly approved them later in the day.

The final measure allows people who are not health care professionals to administer naloxone in emergencies - and says that anyone witnessing or experiencing a drug overdose who calls 911 for medical assistance shall not be subject to prosecution for drug use and possession or subject to revocation of parole or probation.

Christie insisted on some minor changes. Parole and probation conditions can be modified as a result of the incident. Protection was removed for those violating restraining orders. And the measure makes it clear that good Samaritans can still be prosecuted for other crimes.

But the parents of overdose victims and others who pushed for the measure are pleased with the outcome. Quick help in the event of a drug overdose can save lives. New Jersey is now the 12th state to provide such immunity.

The only issue now is getting the word out about the law. People have to know this immunity is available for the measure to have any effect.

But who knows? Maybe Christie - the one running for re-election in blue New Jersey - will do a public service announcement highlighting the new law.

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