Nashville, Tennessee (CNN) – Chris Christie sharply criticized President Barack Obama’s management of the Veterans Affairs scandal on Friday, calling the resignation of Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki “long overdue.”
“I wish that the President had been more aggressive since minute one to go in and fix it himself, because what’s happened there is a disgrace,” Christie said in a brief interview on Friday, hours after Shinseki met with the President and stepped down from his post.
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Christie made the comments during a stop at a barbecue restaurant in Nashville, where he was campaigning with Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam.
The New Jersey governor, who may seek to fill Obama’s shoes in 2016, said the President has been too passive in his response to revelations of misconduct at veterans health centers around the country.
“More importantly than the resignation, he should be in rolling up his sleeves and trying to put a stop to it,” Christie said. “That’s more than just saying you’re angry and getting resignations.”
With three stops in Tennessee on Friday, Christie was making his first political foray into the south as a potential White House candidate. Earlier Friday, he campaigned in Memphis at a re-election event for Sen. Lamar Alexander. Tonight, he’ll address the Tennessee GOP’s annual Statesmen’s Dinner in downtown Nashville.