(CNN) - Gov. Chris Christie, a Republican governor from the blue state of New Jersey, argued Wednesday that he's more conservative than people from the South may think.
Asked by reporters in Birmingham what Alabama voters may find surprising about him, Christie suggested there's a common misconception about his ideology.
"Folks believe when you're a Republican from New Jersey that somehow you're not going to be conservative," he told reporters. "I think that's the biggest thing that folks in Alabama, as they get to know me better, will understand."
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Christie, chairman of the Republican Governors Association, was in the state Wednesday to campaign and fundraise for incumbent Gov. Robert Bentley.
As he considers a presidential bid, Christie has faced questions about whether his political views and brash style can translate to states outside New Jersey.
"There are certain biases all over the country, right? We have certain predispositions and pre-conceived notions about folks, but as I get to know the folks in Alabama better over time, I think they'll understand that I'm a pretty conservative guy and have a record in New Jersey that is conservative," he said.
While Christie has traveled to Tennessee and Florida for RGA duties, Wednesday marks his first big swing in what many consider the Deep South. Later in the day he crosses the border into Mississippi to campaign for Gov. Phil Bryant in Biloxi.
To highlight his social conservative bona fides, Christie pointed to his anti-abortion record, noting that he's the first "pro-life governor" elected in New Jersey since the 1973 Supreme Court decision legalizing abortion. He also mentioned that he has vetoed Planned Parenthood funding five times since becoming governor.