NEWARK, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) — Ouch.
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is criticizing his Democratic opponent for what he says was a mocking reference to his weight.
A clip posted on YouTube shows Sen. Barbara Buono questioning Christie for spending $2 million on shore promotional commercials in which he appears.
On the video, Buono says, “I don’t know about you, but seeing Chris Christie frolicking on the beach is not going to drive me to go to the shore.”
Christie said at a campaign event Tuesday in Newark that the comment shows Buono is willing to stoop to the same tactic as former Gov. Jon Corzine, Christie’s opponent in 2009.
“I’ll put up with it. I put up with it four years ago. I’ll put up with it now. Won’t change the way I feel about myself and about lots of other people who I represent in this state who face a similar challenge I’ve had in trying to control their weight and be in better shape,” the governor said.
The 50-year-old governor and potential contender for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination has long struggled with his weight, and has also joked about it, too.
He is noticeably slimmer since undergoing Lap-Band surgery in February.
The “Stronger Than The Storm” ads, which stopped airing on Sept. 1, featured a catchy song. Democrats blasted Christie for appearing in the commercials, funded with federal disaster relief money, saying it unfairly gives him more media exposure ahead of the upcoming election.
Christie said the purpose of the campaign was to let people know the Jersey Shore had recovered from Hurricane Sandy and was open for business.
Buono’s camp said she was trying to call attention to problems at the shore 10 months after Sandy — not to the governor’s weight.
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