Spending cuts rile Christie, who blasts lack of 'leadership'
March 4th, 2013
09:21 PM ET
9 years ago

Spending cuts rile Christie, who blasts lack of 'leadership'

(CNN) – New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie wasn't kidding when he said last year that "when the president does things that deserve scorn, I'll give him scorn."

Those comments were made after the Republican governor received some blowback from members of his party for praising the president following Superstorm Sandy. He defended himself by saying "When the president does things that deserve praise, I will give him praise," adding he would also freely criticize Obama if he disagreed with his actions.

On Monday, that criticism came during a press conference, when Christie described a lack of "real leadership" in Washington as massive forced spending cuts take effect.

"Real leadership would get this fixed," Christie said during the event. "You get everybody in the room and you fix it, and you don't let them leave until you fix it."

Obama himself was asked last Friday why he couldn't do just that, responding to a question from CNN Chief White House Correspondent Jessica Yellin by saying he can't "force Congress to do the right thing."

"I am not a dictator, I'm the president," he said while speaking to reporters in the White House Press Briefing Room. "Ultimately, if Mitch McConnell or John Boehner say we need to go to catch a plane, I can't have Secret Service block the doorway."

Christie seemed incredulous Monday that something more couldn't be done to avert the massive spending cuts, which took affect Friday. And he appeared perplexed that a deal hasn't yet been struck to shift the spending cuts to other areas of the federal budget.

"I don't understand it. I don't understand why they haven't fixed it already. It seems to me that it should be pretty easy to fix," Christie said, adding later that he thought Congress needed to address spending on entitlements like Medicare and Social Security.

"The worst thing about sequester in my view is that they're not spending any time talking about entitlement spending, which is where we need to focus on over the long haul to make a big difference in terms of our long term fiscal health as a country."

Filed under: Budget • Chris Christie
soundoff (248 Responses)
  1. Darrell

    Actually, Christie went in on both the Oval office and Congress. I have to say, I generally vote Democrat because the Republicans seem to have no one's interest at heart but their own and their agenda more than the overall population of the country which is more diverse than their viewpoint. But Christie could possibly be the Republican I would vote for. He isn't letting his party stance influence his way of thinking and beliefs. He is reacting on what needs to be done no matter the party agenda. He's gaining my respect more each time.

    March 5, 2013 09:31 am at 9:31 am |
  2. jnpa

    It is only 4 months since the last election but the campaigners for 2016 are already out and running!

    March 5, 2013 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  3. jkane sfl the gop national disgrace party will be swept out like the trash they are in2014 ?

    The gop is always trying to dump soc sec that funds it self,but doesn't mind stealing money from the fund to balance their budgets and also privatize it so their cronies can make money off your money which you would never see again. The gop needs to be thrown out of goverment totally in the 2014 mid terms to get rid of this obstruction and move forward again and not backwards with the gop garbage !!!

    March 5, 2013 09:33 am at 9:33 am |
  4. JPB

    smithdp where are you getting your information that the deficit is declining. Hello

    March 5, 2013 09:35 am at 9:35 am |
  5. gene

    obama came up with the sequester idea, put erskin bowles in charge of it, got it through the house and senate, signed it into law, and is now blaming everone else. what great leadership.

    March 5, 2013 09:35 am at 9:35 am |
  6. Blah blah the wheel's off your trailer

    When conservatives are confronted with their inner infedelities of envy and jealousy, they call the President all sorts of name as a means of mental therapy, believing that their hate bating would soothe their shortcomings. Well, keep it up folkes. The last time I checked, the President got re-elected by a landslide.

    March 5, 2013 09:36 am at 9:36 am |
  7. Guest

    Tax receipts higher than ever, the revenue is coming in to the feds liberals – unfortunately your wasteful policies blow right through it!

    March 5, 2013 09:38 am at 9:38 am |
  8. Lynda/Minnesota


    Why did CNN's Kevin Liptak only report half the story? Christie blasted both the WH and Congress. Biased media encourages political finger pointing which has proven to be grossly unproductive.

    CNN is no longer a news organization. It has become nothing more than a Republican talking point parrot squawking Republican BS 24/7. Indeed, every morning CNN gets its "facts" straight from Reince Preibus, Eric Cantor, John McCain, John Boehner, Mitch McConnell, Eric Erickson, and the Drudge Report, and Sarah Palin's Facebook rants ... thus allowing their trolls show up on cue. At one point it was rather humorous. Now, it's just old. Too old.

    March 5, 2013 09:38 am at 9:38 am |
  9. bevr

    Chris Christie will always be a state/regional player at best, with a quote every now & then in the national press. He is riding at an all time high here now...and he still isn't a national player.

    March 5, 2013 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  10. JohnRJohnson

    Christie knows better than this. He knows how a legislative body can obstruct anything an executive officer wants to do. He also knows that congressional leaders have been invited to the White House MANY times and declined the invitations. These are recalcitrant, opportunistic politicians who have weighed their responsibility to their party and to their country, and the country has come out on the short end every time.

    March 5, 2013 09:41 am at 9:41 am |
  11. much thunder.little rain

    you got to love christie..he has balls

    March 5, 2013 09:42 am at 9:42 am |
  12. sonny chapman

    Hey Christie, here's a hint; Repubs. HATE Obama. They're so blinded by their hatred that they can't see straight. They hate Obama MUCH more than their self-proclaimed Love of Country.

    March 5, 2013 09:43 am at 9:43 am |
  13. Liberal&Proud

    Okay. Christie got what he wanted from the WH and now he is back showing his true colors. Talk to you party Mr. Christie and tell them to put down all the hatemongering which is dsetroying our chances for an economic recovery ........Oh wait.........they are not talking to "YOU" either.......HUM

    March 5, 2013 09:43 am at 9:43 am |
  14. geggyg

    If Christie and other repubs Pres Obama for a lack of leadership in he budget debates , I hope they reassess their opinion of the so called Great Republican Leader Pres Reagon who had 3 govt shutdowns , one in which he actualled vetoed a Continuing Resolution passed by both Houses of Congress. Pres GHW Bush had one govt shutdown , luckily it was on a long weekend public holiday so didnt cause many problems. What about Pres Clinton who during the last election was continually praised as being a good leader who knew how to compromise and Obama should take lessons from him on leadership, he had 2 Govt shutdowns .

    March 5, 2013 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
  15. lyn

    ALL Americans and the World knows that the Republicans would not work with President Obama, every one knows that all the GOP's want is to have this President FAIL. " GOD BLESS PRESIDENT OBAMA"

    March 5, 2013 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  16. Wake up People!

    @Lynda/Minnesota. Great comment again. And it's sickening. Was it just me or did they ramp it up after Mittens accused the media of being against him?

    March 5, 2013 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  17. Rudy NYC


    obama came up with the sequester idea, put erskin bowles in charge of it, got it through the house and senate, signed it into law, and is now blaming everone else. what great leadership.
    The Republicans are the ones who started the blame game once they saw polling results that said the public will blame the GOP for any economic damage caused by the Sequester. The GOP is really trying to misdirect public attention from the fact that 3/4 of them voted FOR the sequester, with most of those voting against wanting larger spending cuts. Boehner is also on record bragging about how the Sequester Bill was 98% of what he wanted and that he was happy about it.

    March 5, 2013 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  18. Reality Check

    "Tax receipts higher than ever, the revenue is coming in to the feds liberals – unfortunately your wasteful policies blow right through it!"

    As a percentage of GDP, the number is actually lower recent norms and has been for several years.

    March 5, 2013 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  19. th

    Quit calling social security entitlements, we put money into those programs every pay check. Congress should get together and vote to have their pay cut beings they say they can't automatically cut their pay. Then VOTE ON IT. If everyone else has to suffer so should they even more than others.

    March 5, 2013 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  20. Marc Florida

    Christie is one Republican I listen too.

    March 5, 2013 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  21. Boomer in Mo

    Christie is going to end up getting thrown out of the GOP entirely. I think he is great. He tells it as he sees it and even if I don't agree with him, I appreciate his honesty and bluntness about expressing his opinion. Go Chris Christie. You are just what those crusty old white guys need.

    March 5, 2013 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  22. Sarah

    Entitlement reform?? Are you kidding me they cannot even get Obama to sit down and go through specific cuts in the general budget that are not so severe as the sequester much less entitlements. Defense already had a massive cut in 2012 and are going to be hit hard again as they are taking 50% of the hit for the sequester when defense is only 12% of the budget. That is the kind of idiocy we are dealing with and that is how Pres. Me structured it.

    March 5, 2013 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
  23. Blah blah the wheel's off your trailer

    As long as President Obama is successful in moving this country forward with his courageous and progressive leadership and historic and monumental achievements, conservatives will try to convince themselves that this President hasn't accomplish anything. Hey folkes, President Obama's triunphant and historic legacy is already set in stone and you cannot do anything about it. You can learn to live with that or go drink Kool-Aid.

    March 5, 2013 09:59 am at 9:59 am |
  24. Guest

    (a) surprised Christie is upset at spending cuts. I guess like most Republicans, its not about cutting big government... its about having their form of big government.

    (b) Congress controls the power of the purse. Obama is both morally and Constitutionally correct to not force Congress to do anything. If they cannot decide, the American people should not re-elect them. Obama's job is to enforce the laws Congress makes and, if he wants, push his own agenda. But in this particular case, Congress explicitly and unquestionably has full power and responsibility.

    March 5, 2013 10:01 am at 10:01 am |
  25. Wake up People!

    I knew it wouldn't take long for Christy to drop back to his knees in front of the GOP. Glad he didn't fool me. I would NEVER vote for someone like him, EVER.

    Is this one ok or will it be zapped too? Just wondering why you post the nastiest comments about the First family but if someone says anything negative about certain people it gets deleted?

    March 5, 2013 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
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