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N.J. Gov. Christie on Washington: 'They need to get the job done'

  |   Nov. 10, 2013 at 1:03 PM
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TRENTON, N.J., Nov. 10 (UPI) -- New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie refused to fuel talk on a possible 2016 presidential run on the Republican ticket, saying there was much to do in his state.

"I know everybody is going to be speculating about what may come in my future and lots of other people's future in our party, but the fact is, I'm focused on being the governor of New Jersey and being the chairman of the Republican Governors Association, and I think those two jobs will keep me pretty busy over the next year," Christie said Sunday on "Fox News Sunday."

Cruising to re-election, Christie racked up impressive numbers among key voting blocs -- 57 percent among women, 51 percent among Hispanics and 42 percent among Democrats. He said his re-election was about a record of working with a Democratic Legislature that proves "we can get the job done."

He also said Republicans were not solely to blame for the gridlock in Washington.

"[As] I've said before, I think there is plenty of blame to go around in Washington to both parties," Christie told "Fox News Sunday. "The fact is that they need to get the job done. That's what people want."

Christie has been criticized by the hard right of his party for not being conservative enough, with Tea Party members pointing to Christie's praise of the Obama administration in the aftermath of last year's Hurricane Sandy, his taking to task the GOP-House for its slow action on Sandy aid and for not vetoing a bill that would outlaw same-sex marriages in the Garden State, among other things.

Christie said Congress needed to work together and with President Obama on immigration reform to "fix a broken system that's not serving our economy well, not serving our country well.

He then uttered two words that are an anathema to gun-rights supporters: Gun control, saying it "can be" part of an effort to control violence.

As governor, Christie said he signed -- and vetoed -- measures that include gun controls based he said on whether they were consistent with Second Amendment rights.

"So what it is, is looking at things, these things case by case, to see does it make common sense, does it control violence?" Christie said. "We need to not pander on these issues. We need to have adults in the room who make decisions based upon controlling violence in our society."

Commenting on the Time magazine cover that shows his silhouette with the headline, "The elephant in the room," Christie, who had spoken about his weight-loss struggle and had gastric band surgery, said it "certainly not the first weight joke that has been thrown my way over the course of the last four years."

"It does not matter to me, it really doesn't, and if you're going to be bothered by that kind of stuff, then you don't belong in public leadership," Christie said.

He also was critical of those who criticize his short temper.

"I am absolutely confident in my own ability to lead, and obviously so are 61 percent of the people in the state of New Jersey, who re-elected me on Tuesday night," Christie said. "And they re-elected me because of a record that we're really proud of, and because we've brought people together."

"[At] the end of the day ... here's what the people in Washington, D.C. don't understand -- if you want to win a vote by that kind of margin, if you want to attract the majority of the Hispanic vote, if you want to nearly triple your African-American vote, you need to show up, you need to go into those neighborhoods, you need to campaign in places."

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