New Jersey Governor Chris Christie said “know-nothing” campaign staffers are the sources of reports of tension between him and Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney in the wake of Hurricane Sandy.
“When you get to the end of a campaign and it’s unsure of the results, those who fear they may be blamed if things don’t go well will try to look for other people to blame,” Christie, a 50-year-old Republican, told reporters today in Westwood. “That’s the way it goes.”
Americans today are deciding the presidential race. The website Politico reported Nov. 3 that “some Romney friends and donors” were irritated that Christie had praised President Barack Obama after the two toured the devastated New Jersey shore aboard Marine One on Oct. 31.
The Huffington Post reported yesterday that Christie, who had traveled the country as a campaign surrogate, declined Romney’s invitation to appear alongside him at a rally Nov. 4 in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, across the Delaware River from Trenton, the New Jersey capital.
“It’s completely untrue,” Christie referring to The Huffington Post report, told reporters today. He said he spoke to Romney on Oct. 28, the night before Hurricane Sandy made landfall at the New Jersey coast.
“I told him: ‘Listen, Mitt, if the storm hits the way they think it’s going to, I’m off the campaign trail at least through Election Day,’” Christie said. “He said: ‘Chris, do what you have to do. Do your job and don’t worry.’”
Christie said he expects Romney to clinch the election. “All this noise is coming from know-nothing, disgruntled Romney staffers who are mad at the fact I said nice things about the president,” Christie said. “That’s too bad for them.”
Christie praised Obama after he and the president toured the most devastated areas Oct. 31. At a news conference that night in West Trenton, Christie said the president “couldn’t have been better.”
To contact the reporters on this story: Elise Young in Trenton at firstname.lastname@example.org; Terrence Dopp in Trenton at email@example.com
To contact the editor responsible for this story: Stephen Merelman at firstname.lastname@example.org