New Jersey Republican Gov. Chris Christie has officially begun a rightward shift as he gears up for a re-election bid in 2013 — and a possible presidential run three years later.
Two days after blasting the Supreme Court for striking down the federal defence of Marriage Act and pledging he would again veto any gay marriage bill that reaches his desk, Christie took his most significant shot at President Barack Obama in a while.
“I know when you look at Washington right now, you shake your head at a president who can’t figure out how to lead, at a Congress that only 11 per cent of the people in the last poll I saw approve of the job they’re doing,” Christie said at a town hall meeting Friday, according to The Star-Ledger.
“That’s what happens when you have someone in the executive office who is more concerned about being right than he is concerned about getting things done,” Christie said. “But I’m not going to be that kind of leader of New Jersey.”
The Democratic Governors Association blasted out Christie’s comments — looking for any opening at a time when Christie’s Democratic challenger, Barbara Buono, is routinely trailing by some 30-odd points in polls.
This week, Christie seems to be attempting to swing his perception a bit right, striking a delicate balance between comfortably winning re-election and building back support nationally from conservatives after some high-profile appearances with Obama after Hurricane Sandy.
Recent polls have shown that Christie is popular across party lines, something that separates him from every other nationally prominent politician. His popularity among Republicans, though, falls significantly short of GOP Sens. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) and Rand Paul (R-Ky.), who are often mentioned as two potential 2016 candidates.
Christie has another controversial social issue headed to his desk. The New Jersey Senate passed a measure on Thursday that would ban so-called “gay conversion” therapy for minors. Supporters of the bill are confident that Christie will sign it, since he has publicly said he is opposed to the practice.
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