In Christie's defense: Top Democrat weighs in
February 8th, 2013
10:23 AM ET
10 years ago

In Christie's defense: Top Democrat weighs in

(CNN) – Chris Christie has found a defender amid the latest hubbub over his weight.

David Axelrod, the former top adviser to President Barack Obama, wrote on Twitter Friday:


The doctor is Connie Mariano, the former White House doctor who tended to former President Bill Clinton from 1992-2001. She told CNN Tuesday that she was concerned about Christie's health should he seek the presidency.

"I'm a physician more than I'm a Democrat or Republican and I'm worried about this man dying in office," she said.

On Wednesday the New Jersey Republican fired back at Mariano's assessment, describing her as "just another hack who wants five minutes on TV."

"If she wants to get on a plane and come here to New Jersey and ask me if she wants to examine me and review my medical history, I will have a conversation with her about that," Christie said after touring the post-Superstorm Sandy reconstruction effort in Sea Girt, New Jersey.

"Until that time she should shut up," he fired. The doctor has since stood by her remarks.

Christie has been open about his weight, joking Monday on David Letterman's late night program, "I'm basically the healthiest fat guy you've ever seen in your life." He punctuated the joke by snacking on a doughnut midway through the interview because he "didn't know it was going to be this long."

But he has also talked more frankly about his health, saying Monday that he and his doctors did have a plan for his health, and "whether it'll be successful or not, you'll all be able to notice."

"My doctor continues to warn me that my luck is going to run out relatively soon, so believe me it's something I'm very conscious of," he said.

–CNN's Greg Wallace and Kevin Liptak contributed to this report.

Filed under: Chris Christie • David Axelrod
soundoff (110 Responses)
  1. Jesse

    As sensitive Chris Christie is about his weight, you shouldn't say his situation is a "ticking timebomb." That's no way to help the guy.

    February 8, 2013 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  2. Celisti

    sure, we can leave him alone, as long as he's not running for president.

    if he wants to be fat/obese, enjoy his diabetes and heart problems, what do we care. but if he's thinking about running for president, that's a different story, and he could be dead suddenly even if he could get elected.

    February 8, 2013 10:56 pm at 10:56 pm |
  3. Jeff

    Christie's weight is NOT an issue. I hate the fact that people think this is somehow funny or fair game for criticism.

    Criticize him for his politics if you must: that is fair game. But his personal health is just that: a personal issue, best managed by Chris Christie himself, not some Doctor who has not entered into a professional relationship with him.

    I absolutely agree with the Governor on this..

    February 9, 2013 12:08 am at 12:08 am |
  4. Linda

    The only PREJUDICE encouraged. If he was a racial minority and the doctor made a racial comment, it would never be allowed. The sad thing is fat people are just as guilty of prejudice against other fat people. What do we do when young people become anorexic because of all the comments about fat people? Evidently doctors aren't concerned about this repercussion!

    February 9, 2013 01:54 am at 1:54 am |
  5. gr

    It's amazing to me to see how people cheer on folks who tell people to "shut up" and choose them as a leader – Great role-modeling. Give me a leader who can express the same point or meaning in a dignified yet respectful manner, and I say that is one who has gained a little wisdom over time and the one to follow.

    February 9, 2013 03:02 am at 3:02 am |
  6. cynthia

    He should listen to the doc.

    He owes America his allegiance and hence his service to his country. To be a healthy president and role model. He should avoid people saying, if it works for Christie it works for me. He has no ethical obligation but he is morally obliged to take care of his obesity.

    Dr Mariano is obviously right and she obviously wants him to run for President. And she is kick-starting his campaign by making sure he is covering one of his obvious bases right. So, Chris, be an encouragement to America by giving us a message that ... we can pull ourselves out of a bad and deluded economic situation.

    February 9, 2013 04:05 am at 4:05 am |
  7. CarlWstCoast

    While weight may be of legitimate general concern, I don't think Mr. Christie's weight has prevented him from being an outstanding governor for the state of New Jersey. Nor do I happen to think that a person's weight should disqualify them from seeking or holding public office, up to and including the presidency. If this doctor is so "concerned", perhaps she should have discussed it with him. I gotta weigh in with the governor on this one (pun intended): this is simply a case of someone seeking a bit of TV coverage, and it's a shame that Mr. Christie's kids happen to watch the "news"...

    February 9, 2013 04:26 am at 4:26 am |
  8. aztekman

    Dems tried to say McCain would die in office if President. This "doctor" is Just another BS partisan who s irresponsible and should have the AMA look at her license.

    February 9, 2013 05:29 am at 5:29 am |
  9. snowdogg

    "That doctor had no right to comment publically on Christie."

    It is called Freedom of Speech – remember?

    February 9, 2013 08:01 am at 8:01 am |
  10. cham101

    If Mr. Christie does choose to run for president I beg him to choose his VP with great care. It will be the vice president who will ultimately end up running the country.

    February 9, 2013 08:11 am at 8:11 am |
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