Christie steps up war of words with Maryland's O'Malley
February 26th, 2011
04:51 PM ET
12 years ago

Christie steps up war of words with Maryland's O'Malley

Washington (CNN) - New Jersey Governor Chris Christie escalated the recent war of words between himself and Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley on Saturday, accusing O'Malley of using the feud to elevate his national profile.

O'Malley, a Democrat, has criticized Christie's confrontational and headline-grabbing governing style, calling it a "stand-up routine" and accusing the Republican of being "abusive towards public employees." He has also called Christie a hypocrite over his tough budget talk for skipping a $3 billion payment into the state's pension fund and allowing New Jersey property taxes to increase.

Christie recently dismissed O'Malley's barbs as "pabulum."

He again scoffed at O'Malley while speaking to CNN at the National Governors Association winter meeting in Washington.

"I am happy to give Governor O'Malley an opportunity to get his name in The New York Times any time he wants," Christie said. "That's all that's about."

"That's OK, though," he continued. "We are actually doing stuff in New Jersey that deal with bringing costs of government down and cutting budgets and speaking plainly to people, and if criticizing that in the short term helps Governor O'Malley raise his profile, then I am happy to help Governor O'Malley raise his profile."

O'Malley, the chairman of the Democratic Governors Association, was seated just feet from Christie at the NGA's bipartisan opening session on Saturday. The two men, both rising stars within their respective parties, were separated only by Connecticut Governor Dan Malloy, a Democrat.

Also Saturday, Christie continued to brush off speculation that he may seek the GOP presidential nomination in 2012. He did, however, opine on the state of the race.

Christie said it's still "much too early" to evaluate the strength of the potential Republican field.

"You can't judge the strength or weakness of the field when you don't even know who is in the field," Christie said. "There could people who are saying they're not getting in now but may wind up getting in, and there may be people who are in right now but decide not to run."

Christie and his advisers recently dined with former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney at the New Jersey governor's mansion, and Christie said a handful of other potential presidential candidates have requested similar sit-downs. But he declined to name names.

"I am not going talk about that," he said. "When I meet with them, I'm sure they will leak it and then you'll know. So why jump the gun, really? Let them do the leaking instead of me."

Filed under: Chris Christie • Martin O'Malley
soundoff (45 Responses)
  1. paul

    Christie has a "my way or the highway" attitude and he loves it!!!! He can't get enough of the bully attitude. Problem is, that only works for the short term as more and more people realize what bullly tactics he uses. Turning down money from the gov't to help solve transportation problems, attacking teachers, attacking all unions and hard working common people of N.J. is not the way to win hearts. He probably enjoys his big salary and benefits though.

    February 26, 2011 08:40 pm at 8:40 pm |
  2. Charlie

    Corruption from Maryland govt stinks all the way here.

    February 26, 2011 09:09 pm at 9:09 pm |
  3. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    Christie needs to help himself to the gym instead of having a war of words, this guy is a heart attack waiting to happen and if he's not diabetic already, he is clearly on his way. This man is too young to be so physically unfit, so how can he possibly care about people when he doesn't care about his health.

    February 26, 2011 09:12 pm at 9:12 pm |
  4. Root and stem

    O'Malley needs to mind his own frickin business.

    February 26, 2011 09:15 pm at 9:15 pm |
  5. Carlos

    Sorry, O'Malley, you missed the train. The next wave of Governors has arrived. Your chance to be make a name for yourself and be (a national) presence has passed (where have you been?). Stop using Christie to get you name in the paper. It's over pops.

    February 26, 2011 09:53 pm at 9:53 pm |
  6. Dee

    Governor Christie reminds me of a bully, it's okay to have different views and opinions but you have to be very careful how you talk and treat people especially if they are hurting in this uncertain economy.

    Kids tend to emulate adults and he is a prime example of a big bully we have enough problems in school and now we see it with our Leaders in Government. It seems like he is the one that wants to be all over the news who needs a President like this our nation would be engaged and troops fighting in Wars all the time with his big mouth.


    February 26, 2011 09:54 pm at 9:54 pm |
  7. Chris

    Well Christie, you know what they say "Hit dog will holla!"

    February 26, 2011 10:06 pm at 10:06 pm |
  8. T'sah from Virginia

    Christie is such a BULL HEAD!! He really thinks he has ALL of the answers. His style is typical of that OLD WESTERN Sheriff – mixed with that northern NY/NJ attitude!!! It's sickening and difficult to allow yourself to listen to him or like him!!!

    February 26, 2011 10:20 pm at 10:20 pm |
  9. Henry Miller

    "abusive towards public employees."

    Public employees have been abusing American taxpayers for decades–it's about time the taxpayers got some Governors who are on their side.

    February 26, 2011 10:37 pm at 10:37 pm |
  10. Tom

    It is a stand up routine. Christie failed NJ when his team could not fill out the applciations to recieve the federal aid they needed. He blamed it on Obama because the application was too long.

    February 26, 2011 10:48 pm at 10:48 pm |
  11. Squigman

    A war of words that grab attention, while the real war is being waged at the pump, and the grocery. The first casualty of war is alway the truth, unless you pay attention to your pocket book,or billfold, then the truth hurts.

    February 26, 2011 11:20 pm at 11:20 pm |
  12. Frank in Valparaiso Indiana

    When the people driving to NYC for a decent job remember how Christie stopped the tunnel project, he'll be toast.

    Since he hates state employees so much, maybe he can get rid of the security detail, maids, and all the support staff he has. They can work somewhere else in the state and leave him alone.

    February 26, 2011 11:32 pm at 11:32 pm |
  13. Mark

    "When I meet with them, I'm sure they will leak it and then you'll know. So why jump the gun, really? Let them do the leaking instead of me."

    His head is bigger than his waist!

    February 27, 2011 12:27 am at 12:27 am |
  14. Greg

    O'Malley called it right. If the "fat man", this caricature of Sidney Greenstreet runs, there will be a rush on wide angle lenses and wide screen TVs. I kjnow who's getting the most out of the 2 for 1 Burger King Whopper coupons, and Christie doesnt share. Arrogance and hubris of this kind has brought many a cheap political hack to his knees. In this case, the fat is literally in the fire! (that is, Christie)

    February 27, 2011 01:44 am at 1:44 am |
  15. majikbunny

    Its really a shame that all Christie can do is bad mouth other Governors! Wasn't he elected to serve the people of his own state? Is everything AOK in New Jersey so as to allow him to be a playground bully?

    February 27, 2011 02:04 am at 2:04 am |
  16. mj

    I watch chris christie on TV all the time and i am sick and tired of seeing him. The man is so insecure and the only way for him to get attention from his party is to bully people. I have dealt with a lot of people like him this is part of my job but do not go on TV expose yourself like that. people will love you for who you are. you do not have to put somebody down to feel good about yoursel. i am sure your family cares a great deal about you.

    February 27, 2011 06:17 am at 6:17 am |
  17. Chris

    Gov. Christie escalated the war of words with Gov. O'Malley, accusing O'Malley using the feud to elevate his national profile – and thus Gov. Christie himself used the feud to elevate his own national profile while showing what a complete and utter hypocrite he is.

    February 27, 2011 07:38 am at 7:38 am |
  18. mm

    Oh please please please let this man stay in New Jersey. I feel sorry for the folks in New Jersey having to deal with him, but definitely don't want to deal with him on a national level!

    February 27, 2011 08:24 am at 8:24 am |
  19. Dawn Ada, Ohio

    Christie reminds me of Rush Limbaugh lite. Not so much because of his stature but because of his attitude and his odd attempt at humor. He tries to inject humor, but does a horrible job of it, because there isn't a whole lot of humorous things happening in this day and age and people are hurting and he just really doesn't seem to care. Limbaugh doesn't need to care he is a multi million dollar mouthpiece for the republican party. Christie on the other hand is supposed to be the Governor for ALL voters. My guess is he won't last very long, the people of NJ will get very tired of him very fast.

    February 27, 2011 08:31 am at 8:31 am |
  20. DickNH

    Christie has been eating MUCH too much of his own pabulum. HIS profile is literally ballooning to cartoonish proportions !

    February 27, 2011 08:46 am at 8:46 am |
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