(CNN) – Two members of the race for the 2012 GOP presidential nomination voiced their support for New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie after he chose not to enter the field Tuesday.
Though they may not miss the competition, former Utah Gov. John Huntsman's campaign and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney had kind words for Christie, who bowed out before he was in after months of mounting pressure from Republicans.
"Governor Christie is a tremendous public servant who will be a force in Republican politics for years to come," Huntsman's campaign manager said in a written statement. "Though he will not be entering the presidential race, his message of reforming government and restoring American exceptionalism will not be lost."
After hosting a town hall meeting in Florida, Romney weighed in on Christie's decision as well.
"Competition is always a good thing and he would have been a very fine contender and competitor if he were in the race," he said.
Texas Gov. Rick Perry chimed in with a statement saying, “Chris Christie is a friend, a great governor and rising star in the Republican Party."
"Gov. Christie will be a strong asset for the Republican Party as we work to build a national movement to get America working again, reduce the influence of Washington in our lives, and defeat President Obama next year.”