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Entries in Chris Christie (84)

Tuesday
May282013

Obama, Chris Christie to Tour Recovery Efforts at Jersey Shore

JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images(ASBURY PARK, N.J.) -- Nearly six months after superstorm Sandy ravaged the Jersey Shore, President Obama will return to New Jersey on Tuesday to get a firsthand look at the recovery and rebuilding efforts.

Obama will join Gov. Chris Christie Tuesday afternoon in Asbury Park, N.J., where he will speak about the rebuilding efforts. The pair will tour areas that were hard hit by last September's storm.

In addition to the tour, President Obama will meet with citizens and business owners from the area, who "have shown such resilience in the face of the destructive storm, and make clear that while the rebuilding efforts to date have been extensive, the administration will continue to stand with the impacted communities as the important work of recovery continues," says a White House press release.

Obama and Christie took a similar tour of the damaged areas of New Jersey near the end of Obama's 2012 presidential campaign.

The stop in New Jersey comes just one day after the president toured Moore, Okla., to see firsthand the damage following last week's tornado.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Monday
Mar042013

Chris Christie Dings Obama’s Sequester Eve ‘Photo Op’

D Dipasupil/Getty Images for Extra(NEW YORK) -- New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie Monday blasted President Obama over what he said was a failure of leadership to prevent the sequester.

“Real leadership would get this fixed. You get everybody in the room and you fix it, and you don’t let them leave until you fix it,” Christie said at a press conference in Jersey City.

“That’s what real leadership is, not calling a meeting two hours before the thing’s going to hit to have a photo-op in the driveway at the White House,” he said of Friday’s eleventh-hour meeting.  ”That’s not real leadership.”

Christie, who has downplayed the much-hyped impact from the automatic spending cuts, also said he’s dumbfounded that both sides have failed to tackle the root causes of the deficit and debt problem. “Seems to me it should be pretty easy to fix,” he said.

On Friday, Obama dismissed the notion that he could have – for lack of a better word – sequestered congressional leaders in the Oval Office until they reached a deal.

“I am not a dictator, I’m the president,” he said at a White House press conference.  ”Ultimately, if Mitch McConnell or John Boehner say we need to go to catch a plane, I can’t have Secret Service block the doorway, right?”

“What I can do is I can make the best possible argument. And I can offer concessions and I can offer compromise. I can negotiate. I can make sure that my party is willing to compromise and is not being ideological or thinking about these just in terms of political terms. And I think I’ve done that,” he said.  “But what I can’t do is force Congress to do the right thing.”

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Feb272013

Christie Joins GOP Governors in Expanding Medicaid 

BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/GettyImages(NEW YORK) -- New Jersey Governor Chris Christie -- an opponent of  the Affordable Care Act, aka Obamacare -- announced Tuesday that his state will participate in Medicaid expansion that is a centerpiece of the law’s attempt to give health insurance to the uninsured.

Christie is the eighth Republican governor to buy into the Medicaid expansion, which was made optional by the U.S. Supreme Court decision on Obamacare.

“While we already have one of the most expansive and generous Medicaid programs in the nation, including the second-highest eligibility rate for children, we have an opportunity to ensure an even greater number of New Jerseyans who are at or near the poverty line have access to critical health services beginning in January 2014,” Christie said at the State House Tuesday during an address on the New Jersey budget.

Half of the states have agreed to participate in Medicaid expansion, according to the Advisory Board, a health consulting firm.

The program will get its funding from the federal government for its first three years and begin contributing 10 percent of the costs in 2020, Christie said.

The announcement came as a bit of a surprise as Christie has often criticized the Affordable Care Act, but it also comes in the wake of an announcement from the Obama administration that states can lower their Medicaid payments to doctors and health care providers.

The New Jersey governor was quick to distance himself from Obama’s signature health care legislation Tuesday.

“I am not a fan of the Affordable Care Act,” Christie said. “I think it’s wrong for New Jersey, and I think it’s wrong for America.”

The governor twice vetoed state legislation that would have created health care exchanges under the ACA, saying the federal government had not made clear how much such a system would cost his state.

But Tuesday he reasoned that if New Jerseyians refused the Obamacare funds in the Medicaid expansion program, they would simply be spent on health care ventures in neighboring states.

“I will make all my judgments as governor based on what I believe is best for New Jersey.”

The New Jersey Star-Ledger first reported Christie’s plans hours before his press conference.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Monday
Feb252013

Chris Christie ‘Not Being Invited’ to CPAC

BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/GettyImages(WASHINGTON) -- There are almost 40 featured speakers at next month’s Conservative Political Action Conference, but one of the most popular Republican governors in the country has yet to receive an invite.

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is “not being invited” to CPAC, according to a source close to the event who was not authorized to speak publicly. The source would not answer why Christie, who is widely thought to be interested in the 2016 presidential race, would not be invited to the confab of conservative activists.

The tough-talking governor hasn’t been afraid to take on his own party in the past. Last month he blasted the Republican leadership in the House of Representatives, specifically Speaker John Boehner, for adjourning without approving a $60 billion relief package for the victims of superstorm Sandy (the money has since been approved).

Christie also angered some members of Mitt Romney's team, and other Republicans, when just one week before the presidential election he praised President Obama’s handling of the storm, which slammed into his state on Oct. 29.

Officially, CPAC says the schedule is still being finalized.

“We still have three weeks to CPAC and have several more announcements to go,” Communications Director Laura Keehner Rigas told ABC News. “I encourage everyone to hold tight.”

The conservative confab is being held outside of Washington, D.C., next month and will feature Romney and almost 40 other featured speakers, many of them also thought to be interested in 2016, including Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul, and House Budget Committee chairman Rep. Paul Ryan.

Other big names include former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, and former presidential candidates Texas Gov. Rick Perry and former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum, among many others.

What is unclear is whether the “not inviting” will stand, now that the news has broken. Christie is incredibly popular in his home state.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Feb202013

Poll: Chris Christie Reaches Record Approval Rating in NJ

BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- “How high is up?”  That’s the question Wednesday from Maurice Carroll, director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute, which is out with a new New Jersey poll that’s a record breaker.

It shows a 74 percent approval rating for New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, the highest of any New Jersey governor in 17 years of Quinnipiac surveys.  New Jersey voters also say 71 to 23 percent that Christie deserves reelection this year.

Christie’s rating is currently the highest of any governor in the seven states surveyed by Quinnipiac.  Even 56 percent of New Jersey Democrats approve of Christie and 48 percent of them say he deserves reelection.  He leads his likely Democratic opponent, State Sen. Barbara Buono, 62 to 25 percent.

“Most governors would kill for a 56 percent job approval rating.  Republican Gov. Christie gets that from Democrats,” Carroll said in a release revealing the numbers.

This is similar to a Fairleigh Dickinson University Public Mind poll out last month that showed a 73 percent approval rating for Christie from Garden State voters.  The sky high numbers come after Christie’s response to Superstorm Sandy, which, at times, included him taking on members of his own party to get federal funds for rebuilding.

While Jersey Democrats approve of Christie, they appear to be split if he ends up running for president against Democrat Hillary Clinton in 2016, the poll shows.

New Jersey voters favor the former secretary of state 49 to 45 percent, according to the poll.  New Jersey has not gone red in a presidential election since 1988.

Christie, however, tops potential White House rival New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo 54 to 36 percent.

“If the 2016 presidential race shapes up to be the battle of the Hudson, native son Christie tops New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo on the west bank of the river, but is locked in a tight race with the Empire State’s favorite adopted daughter, Hillary Clinton,” Carroll said.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Sunday
Jan272013

Facebook Co-Founder Scolds Chris Christie Over Gay Marriage Stance

ABC News(NEW YORK) -- How does Chris Hughes, Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of The New Republic and Facebook Co-founder, feel about Mark Zuckerberg hosting a fundraiser for Republican Governor Chris Christie?  Hughes joined ABC News in a web exclusive to discuss viewer questions from Facebook before the “This Week” roundtable on Sunday.

This week, Hughes launched a redesign of The New Republic, kicking off with a dynamic interview with President Obama.  Before ABC News’ Abby Phillip asked Hughes about the sit-down with Obama, she broached the topic of the Christie/ Zuckerberg alliance.

“I, for one, have a lot of questions about Chris Christie, particularly because less than a year ago he vetoed a marriage equality bill in the New Jersey state legislature,” Hughes said. “Which for me personally —  I got married to my husband last June —  was just really personally frustrating. I mean, there are tens of thousands of couples in New Jersey that can’t share their love and be recognized under the law because of that decision. I’m not a single issue voter, and I think most people aren’t either, but for me personally, it would raise serious concerns about supporting someone like him.”

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jan092013

Chris Christie Says He’d Like Congress to Listen

ABC News(NEW YORK) -- New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie was cautiously optimistic on Wednesday morning that Congress will be able to pass a federal relief aid for the victims of Superstorm Sandy.

“I met with the congressional delegation yesterday, I’m hopeful,” he told ABC's George Stephanopoulos on Good Morning America.  “But at the end of the day, it’s never done ’till it’s done. ...It’s never done ’till it’s done but I’m going to keep the pressure on.”

Christie, who had particularly pointed criticism at House Republicans after the relief bill was held up in the lower chamber, said that Sandy was “above politics,” and he hopes that both parties can learn to rise above, and learn to listen.

“Sandy is and was above politics.  There are certain things that happen in our lives that have to be above politics and both parties should rise above, as hard as that is for them sometimes,” he said.  “I’d like them to learn to listen.  Listen to people in my state, listen to the people in the state of New York.  They’re suffering, they’re hurting, and they don’t understand why they’ve had to wait seven times longer than the victims of Katrina to get any federal aid.”

Christie also discussed the question of gun control in the wake of the tragedy last month in Newtown, Conn., saying that an assault weapons ban has to be part of a larger conversation.

“We have one here,” he said.  “I think that’s got to be part of the entire conversation.  But if you stop there…You’re short changing the problem.”

The governor left the door open on his 2016 plans, saying his political focus right now is on his re-election campaign in New Jersey.

“You know, anybody who tries to plan four years from now, George, you know, is crazy. The fact of the matter is I’m going to follow the advice my mother gave me, which is to do the job that you have right now as well as you can do it and the future will take care of itself,” Christie said.  “What I want to do now is be the governor of New Jersey, as I said, for the last three years, I’d like to do it for the next four.”

However, Christie said he believes he will be more prepared to run in 2016 than he was in 2012.

“I will be more ready than I was in 2012 because I will have done my job for longer and hopefully gotten better,” he said.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Jan082013

After Sandy, Chris Christie Says NJ Is 'Model' for How Government Should Work

Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Gov. Chris Christie said Tuesday that rebuilding New Jersey after superstorm Sandy's devastation had to be his priority and called on Congress to swiftly approve disaster aid, at the same time praising both friends and foes in the state legislature for working together in the aftermath of the storm.

"You have helped define New Jersey as a community, one which -- when faced with adversity -- rolls up its sleeves, gets back to work, and in word and deed shows that New Jersey will never, ever give up," Christie said of his fellow New Jerseyans in his annual state of the state address in Trenton.

"One thing I hope everyone in America now clearly understands -- New Jersey, both Republicans and Democrats, will never stand silent when our citizens are being short-changed," he said.

He said the superstorm that devastated the state was "above politics" and he now looks forward "to what we hope will be quick congressional action on a full, clean Sandy aid bill -- now, next week -- and to enactment by the president."

Christie urged Washington, D.C., to deliver quick financial relief to the state in a speech that was at times reminiscent of the angry dressing down he gave members of his own party, notably House Speaker John Boehner last week, when Boehner decided not to bring a $60 billion Sandy aid bill to the floor, despite assuring northeastern Republicans he would.

"We have waited 72 days, seven times longer than victims of Hurricane Katrina waited," Christie said. "The people of New Jersey are in need and not from their own actions but from an act of God that delivered a natural, human, and financial disaster -- and let me say on behalf of all New Jerseyans we are thankful to the people of America for honoring the tradition of providing relief."

He said it could take "years to repair" some of the devastation in his state and touted his state's bipartisanship, digging the federal government to do the same. He even praised his foes in the state legislature, including Democratic State Senate President Stephen Sweeney, who just a day before accused Christie of "pray(ing)" for the storm to hit New Jersey.

"We are working together, not just as a people, in digging out from Sandy and rebuilding our economy," Christie said. "Here in Trenton, in this chamber, we have had our fights. We have stuck to our principles. But we have established a governing model for the nation that shows that, even with heartfelt beliefs, bipartisan compromise is possible. Achievement is the result. And progress for our people is the payoff."

"The folks in Washington, in both parties could learn something from our record here," Christie, who is considered a possible 2016 Republican presidential candidate, said.

Congress approved $9.7 billion last week to help pay for Sandy-related insurance claims, and Boehner promised a second vote on disaster relief would be held on Jan. 15.

Sandy slammed into New Jersey on Oct. 29, killing more than 125 people and causing billions of dollars in damage. In the days after the storm and before the election, Christie stood with President Obama and praised him, irking some Republicans in the process.

Christie singled out specific New Jersey residents in his speech -- who were also in the audience -- for going beyond the call of duty as the storm hit the state, such as Marsha Hedgepeth, an emergency room technician in Toms River who swam and then hitchhiked with a utility worker from Michigan in order to get to her hospital and put in a 12-hour shift.

After the address, state Democrats responded that while they agree with the Republican governor that there is much rebuilding to do, they criticized Christie for solely focusing on storm recovery and glossing over the state's economic problems.

"I believe that as government leaders we have the responsibility to be able to address more than one problem at a time," Assembly Majority Leader Lou Greenwald said. "The governor must stand with us to recognize that after the first three years of his administration, in the policies of his economic recovery, the numbers don't ring true."

In a Fairleigh Dickinson University Public Mind poll released Monday, 73 percent of registered voters approved of the job their governor was doing.

In November, Christie officially announced his intention to run for re-election and in the 36-day period afterwards he hauled in more than $2.1 million.

In the survey, Christie also comes out on top against his opponents and potential opponents. Christie bests state senator Barbara Buono, who announced her bid last month, with 64 percent to 21 percent. He tops state senator Richard Codey, who served as the state's interim governor for 14 months after the 2004 resignation of Gov. Jim McGreevey, 59 percent to 26 percent. Up against Sweeney, Christie was picked 65 percent to 19 percent.

Neither Sweeney or Codey have announced campaigns, but have said they are considering bids for governor.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Jan082013

Chris Christie Foe Claims Governor ‘Prayed’ for Superstorm Sandy

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Hours before New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie was scheduled to give his state of the state address Tuesday afternoon, a political opponent claimed the tough-talking governor “prayed and got lucky” that superstorm Sandy slammed into the Garden State and drove attention away from the New Jersey economy.

In a news conference Monday, Democratic State Senate President Stephen Sweeney, who has talked about taking Christie on in the 2013 gubernatorial race, referred to the state’s high unemployment rate and Christie’s jobs record while making the Sandy dig.

“His jobs package is a hurricane. I guess he prayed a lot and got lucky that a storm came,” said Sweeney, according to NJ.com.

Sweeney then immediately followed up the attack, saying, “I shouldn’t say that. I apologize for saying that.”

Christie’s office responded to Sweeney’s attack by saying, “It was shocking to hear Sen. Sweeney reduce Hurricane Sandy and its devastation to a heartless partisan attack.”

“Ask the thousands of New Jerseyans whose homes or businesses were destroyed or damaged if they view Hurricane Sandy as a partisan political issue, or if this is what they want to hear from their leaders at this time of recovery as we fight for disaster aid in Washington,” Christie spokesman Michael Drewniak said in a statement. “No one ‘prayed’ for what New Jersey has endured.”

Drewniak added that Sweeney’s comment was “politics at its worst,” and that Sweeney should be “ashamed” and apologize to the state.

Last week, Christie, who is considered a possible 2016 Republican presidential candidate, drew attention for blasting members of his own party for abandoning a $60 billion relief bill for Sandy victims.

Sweeney’s “prebuttal” to Christie’s address this afternoon immediately drew attacks from Republicans around the state and took away from the main focus of the news conference, which was to  draw attention to the state’s 9.6 percent unemployment rate, the fourth highest in the nation.

Sweeney said he has seriously considered jumping into the Democratic primary to challenge Christie. State Sen. Barbara Buono, who has been in state government for 20 years, has already announced her intention to run. There had been speculation that Newark Mayor Cory Booker would also jump into the race, but Booker  announced a run for U.S. Senate instead. Last week, Christie’s campaign announced it had hauled in more than $2 million in a 36-day period since the governor announced a run for re-election.

Sweeney did not immediately respond to ABC News’ request for comment.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Jan082013

Chris Christie 'More Ready' for 2016

Ramin Talaie/Bloomberg via Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- "Now" wasn't Gov. Chris Christie's time in 2012 but that could change in 2016.

The New Jersey Republican decided against a run for the GOP presidential nomination last year, feeling he still owed the residents of his state his full attention after only being in office for less than one term.

Christie is running for relection this year and, barring a major meltdown, the very popular governor is expected to easily defeat any Democratic challenger put up against him.

As for the future, Christie told The Newark Star-Ledger that he's grown as a politician, especially in the wake of Hurricane Sandy, and that if he decides to throw his hat in the presidential sweepstakes, the governor remarked, "Yeah, you’re damn right I’d be more ready."

Among other things, campaigning for 2012 GOP nominee Mitt Romney got him excited about the prospects of seeking national office.

However, Christie may also hope that Republicans have a short memory because many weren't pleased with the way he embraced President Obama during the Sandy relief effort in the waning days of the 2012 campaign.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio







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