TRENTON, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — He flirted with the presidency but in the end, Gov. Chris Christie said what he wanted to be most in the world, at least right now, is a Jersey boy.
Refusing to bow under pressure from the Republican Party, hard-charging Christie declared Tuesday that New Jersey is stuck with him, reports CBS 2’s Marcia Kramer.
“No matter how many times I was asked the question, for me the answer was never anything but ‘no.’ My job here in New Jersey is my passion,” Christie said.
“Now is not my time. I have a commitment to New Jersey that I simply will not abandon. That promise I made to the people of this state when I took office 20 months ago – to fix a broken New Jersey.”
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And with those words New Jersey’s governor put himself out of contention for the 2012 Republican nomination for president, despite being pressured from all sides, including a personal request from former first lady Nancy Reagan.
Christie said his wife and family were also pressured.
“We got a FedEx over the weekend at home for my children. They told my children to sit me down and tell me it was okay to miss the games, concerts and other events because our country needs me now,” Christie said.
To be fair, Christie always said it wasn’t his time. But he said he felt obligated to re-look at it with so many people asking him and with the Republican field looking weak and President Barack Obama vulnerable. He defended disappointing some people with the following:
“Abraham Lincoln said ‘I’d like so see man proud of the place in which he lives. I’d like to see a man live so his place will be proud of him,’” Christie said.
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Christie didn’t rule out running for president sometime. Some say he’ll be able to do it. Others sounded cautionary note.
“So many politicians say I’ll run another time and that doesn’t happen. Then in 2016 who knows what his poll numbers will be,” said Ben Smith of Politico.com.
Few think this shuts the door on a future presidential bid. Kramer asked him if he had any regrets.
“No, I mean you can’t make these decisions with any regret, Marcia. How can I regretful being the governor of the state of New Jersey?”
Maggy Haberman is senior political writer for Politico.
“I think future is wide open. We’ve seen anything can happen in politics. Look how many times this race has changed. I think he absolutely has very a long future,” Haberman said.
As for Christie, the future does hold another election, in 2013, should he choose to run for governor again.
What do you make of Christie’s decision? Sound off in our comments section.