Christie says Romney still 'upset' after loss
November 16th, 2012
10:03 AM ET
1 year ago

Christie says Romney still 'upset' after loss

(CNN) – Gov. Chris Christie became the latest Republican to distance himself from Mitt Romney Friday for saying President Barack Obama won last week's election by offering "gifts" to minority voters.

The New Jersey governor, who endorsed Romney early in the primary process and acted as one of the candidate's top surrogates, was more restrained in his criticism than some other Republicans, including Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal and New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez, saying Romney was still smarting from a negative campaign that ended in an Election Day defeat.

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"He's a good man. He will find his level. And I think it's still a little raw," Christie said on MSNBC. "Do I wish he hadn't said those things? Of course not. But on the other hand, I'm not going to bury the guy for it."

"I understand he's very upset about having lost the election and very disappointed," he continued. "I've never run for president – I've lost elections but never for the presidency – and I'm sure it stings terribly."

Romney's interest in parsing various electoral blocs was the wrong focus, Christie said, saying the former GOP nominee couldn't "expect to be the leader of all the people and be divisive."

The type of post-election analysis Romney was offering made little sense to the New Jersey governor, who said it was time to focus back on governing, rather than making excuses for last Tuesday's electoral thrashing.

"I always hate this kind of scapegoating after elections. When you lose, you lost," Christie said.

He pointed to GOP governors as the future of the party, noting gains made by the Republicans in statehouses, compared to a loss of seats in the Senate and House.

"People see us getting things done," Christie said, saying Republicans don't require a "core philosophical examination."

"What this is about is doing our jobs," he said. "And people expect that if they give you the privilege of serving. Do your job."

He touted his own success in negotiating an agreement with teachers in Newark to grant performance pay based on reviews conducted by their colleagues, promoting the new contract with Randi Weingarten, the president of the American Federation of Teachers.

Christie – who came under fire from some Republicans after the election for appearing with Obama during storm relief efforts following Hurricane Sandy – said the new teachers' contract was an example of finding middle ground in areas where two sides have traditionally been at odds. The funding for the new, merit-based payments will come from a $100 million contribution to Newark schools by Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg.

"We all decided we needed to do something different," Christie said, saying he and the teachers' union located "a boulevard of compromise that exists" between issuing bonuses based on merit or seniority.

"The job of a leader is to find your way onto that boulevard," Christie said.

Newark schools have been controlled by the state of New Jersey, rather than locally, since 1995. Zuckerberg's contribution last year prompted local authorities to petition for control of their schools, a push that was ultimately unsuccessful. Newark's mayor Cory Booker, a Democrat, is seen as a possible choice to challenge Christie in next year's gubernatorial election in the Garden State.

On his monthly radio show Thursday, Booker praised the teachers' deal, saying there was "no contract like it in America."

"It really has broken ground," he said.


Filed under: Chris Christie • New Jersey
soundoff (319 Responses)
  1. Anthony

    Let me make it clear to the right wingers posting in this blog. You are outnumbered. You don't have enough people on your side. That is why you lost the election. If you continue to insult the other side– when you say people on the other side just want free stuff from the government, that is an insult– we will make sure that you lose again in 2016.

    November 16, 2012 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  2. Rudy NYC

    This is how I see the election results. The salesman lost and the statesman won. It's just that simple.

    November 16, 2012 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  3. Anne

    Romney was correct about the gifts, but his statement was politically incorrect, so move on.

    November 16, 2012 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  4. Russell Schokman

    Mr. Christie has a lot more moral turpitude in his little finger than Mitt Romney has in his Celluloid personality.Mormons are straight forward people but Romney with his outright lies , half truths and shady financial dealing could hardly be considered a good example to his Religion. I cannot understand why people chastise Mr. Christie for appreciating what Mr. Obama was doing in trying to help a very serious situation in New Jersey. The Republican party needs more stalwarts like Mr. Christie if the need to regain any sense of respectability. Lies , arrogance and shady dealings do not cut it anymore. My hats off to Mr. Christie.

    November 16, 2012 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  5. AB

    A large percentage of the GOP electorate are getting government assistance. How can they point any fingers?

    November 16, 2012 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm |
  6. RobK

    Unfortunately, the American people threw away our best chance to set this country on the right path, with a President who was morally upright and actually understood how business and the economy worked. The people deserve the politicians they vote into office.

    November 16, 2012 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm |
  7. Wake up People!

    @John. Me too!!

    November 16, 2012 12:13 pm at 12:13 pm |
  8. calamity jane

    So when Romney back peddled on his 47% statement by saying he wants "all Americans to do well, he wants ALL AMERICANS to succeed", does that mean he was just giving lip service for votes?? Aw. And I was starting to think he was sincere. I even cried a little.

    November 16, 2012 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
  9. Belle

    Obama won and Romney lost , so why keep harping on.
    What the people who voted for Obama should be concentrating on is that he delivers on all his great plans for the future for your country that he kept promising during his campaign.
    As you will find out sooner than later is that it was just the usual campaign rhetoric.
    Democrats lash out at anybody who critiques Obama or disagrees with his policies , save your mean spirited vitriol , I am not a Republican .

    November 16, 2012 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
  10. Leeford

    I hope Romney isnt too down and out. Hopefully he can find solace knowing he has hundreds of millions or dollars, a large family, a schedule completely of his own making, luxury boats & jets, and his health.

    November 16, 2012 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  11. Sniffit

    Aaaaaaw, poor Mittens is "still upset."

    Well, I'm stil bathing in schadenfreude like it's Calgon.

    November 16, 2012 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  12. roscoe00

    American voted for mediocrity. The ability to have a safety next paid by somebody else. The ability to have corrupt union power which wrecks the economy and puts us right in league with the old Soviet Union. The ability to take away incentive via transfer payments and confiscatory taxes. The ability to take away from those working to give to those not working. Get a job if you don't like the 47% remark. Everyone jumped on it because nobody wants to hear the ugly truth.

    November 16, 2012 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  13. Mysterious

    Attention to freedom:

    You said, "It's not scapegoating – it's factual, Gov. Christie. Obama is a community organizer and master manipulator and that's how he won. He even manipulated you with the Sandy photo-ops. Romney was a strong candidate and is a stellar man. He has every right to say whatever he deems true after the journey he just embarked on." The majority of us disagree.

    November 16, 2012 11:26 am at 11:26 am |

    PRESIDENT OBAMA WAS A COMMUNITY ORGANIZER, AND NOW HE'S PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES. If Romney were a strong candidate and a sterllar man, he would have been President of the United States. Get over it, move on. YOU LOST BECAUSE AMERICA JUST DOESN'T LIKE MITT ROMNEY.

    November 16, 2012 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  14. Evelyn Connaway

    It's time to forget about Romney – he is just a sore loser like John McCain and the other republicans in congress. If they want to keep their jobs it's time for them to work for we the citizens – all of us as they are supposed to do. Not against us and our country. Working against President Obama, the citizens and our country is being watched by all of us and when they come up for election in 2014 and 2016 the majority in this country will not elect them again. None of them are showing true leadership and it's time to vote them out. They and the republican governors of each state better forget their stupid radical ideology and just do the best thing for all the citizens of your state – what they consider the best – not what the governors think is the best. If this election didn't teach you, that you really weren't doing the right thing by the people I don't know what will. We wanted a man in the Oval Office that cares about all the people, not just a favored few. We really aren't for sale and money can't by us. Money should be a tool for good, not for evil gains.

    November 16, 2012 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  15. Bukoo

    Obviously Romney still doesn't get it. Will someone please explain this to him. If you tell people in their own country that they are not important then you lose them as your constituents, it's that simple. He alienated and insulted some of the very people that would have helped him win the election. So now he's spewing SOUR GRAPES...this excuse, that excuse, any excuse. He still doesn't get it..YOU DID IT TO YOURSELF MR. ROMNEY, To Mr Romney: President OBAMA didn't need to do very much to win because YOU did everything he needed for YOU to lose. It just goes to show you, that no matter how much money you have, there is no substitute for intelligence and that's what Mr. Romeny is dire need of...IT'S INTELLIGENCE STUPID!

    November 16, 2012 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  16. Sniffit

    "Hostess getting the shaft from Obama's labor unions"

    Hostess has been in banruptcy proceedings since 2004. Is your argument that Hostess started bankruptcy proceedings in 2004 because it knew who would be elected in 2012? If so, Nate Silver better be seriously worried about his position as Amurika's election oracle.

    November 16, 2012 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  17. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    John McCain's still "raw" from 2008 so Romney isn't alone. Maybe the two could get together and have what McCain calls a "crying party". I'm afraid when Senator John Kerry, also a former Vietnam Veteran, is appointed to a higher position by Obama, McCain is going to flip his lid completely, can't wait.

    November 16, 2012 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  18. Paul

    @Mark12_31 Well said. It's time the middle class and affluent realize the benefits they get from government through tax advantages like deductions for mortgage interest & property taxes and health care from employers which is highly subsidized by their employers and a tax free benefit. None of these are available to the bottom third of the income base. Together they represent a far higher cost to government coffers than medicaid, unemployment and food stamps. It borders on hypocrisy to say these programs are too expensive to fund at an appropriate level.

    November 16, 2012 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  19. Anonymous

    Christie says >>people expect that if they give you the privilege of serving. Do your job."<< Note to Mitch McConnell,John Boehner and the rest of the obstructionist Congress: DO YOUR JOB and stop trying to change the outcome of the last election. Get to work solving the country's problems instead of playing politics, which is ALL you've done for the last 4 years.

    November 16, 2012 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  20. boosiejones

    Hopefully Hilary will run and I will vote for her.

    November 16, 2012 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  21. ShawnDH

    HA HA!

    Losing couldn't have happened to a more terrible human being. BYE MITTENS. Now sashay away.

    November 16, 2012 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  22. boosiejones

    Hopefully Hilary will run when Obama's term is over,she has my vote.

    November 16, 2012 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  23. Pan3

    Romoney – go back to Bain where you belong and make $ for your super rich investor friends. Leave the governing of the US to the leaders.

    November 16, 2012 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  24. Blah blah the wheel's off your trailer

    Mitt Romney started the presidential campaigning flip flopping and he ended it flip flopping. After he got caught attacking 47% of the American people, he defended his 47% comment for two weeks. Then as Americans got irritated by his senseless remarks and fearing a backlash from voters, he came out in the third week only to say that he was wrong in his comment and that he didn't mean what he said. But now that he has lost the election, he has returned to his innate feelings about the 47% being victims and accepting gifts to cast their vote. Thank God this phony piece of racist bigoted tax evading etch a sketching fraud didn't win the election. God sure works in mysterios ways. Thank you Lord!

    November 16, 2012 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  25. Kathleen in FL

    Christie.. A GIFT to Obama.

    November 16, 2012 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
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