GREENWICH, Conn. (CBSNewYork/AP) — New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie said Monday that he does not plan to campaign for Republican New York gubernatorial candidate Rob Astorino because he does not campaign for candidates he doesn’t think can win.
Christie was in Greenwich, Connecticut, with Tom Foley – the GOP gubernatorial candidate for that state – on Monday when he was asked whether he planned to spend any time campaigning in New York, where Astorino trails incumbent Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo by a large margin in public polls.
“You know, I will spend time in places where we have a chance to win,” said Christie, who chairs the Republican Governors Association.
Christie, who just returned from a trip to Iowa and plans to spend time in Colorado this week, said he’s repeatedly told candidates he doesn’t “pay for landslides” and he doesn’t “invest in lost causes.”
“If the New York race becomes competitive, I’ll consider campaigning in the New York race,” he added. “But right now by the public polls there’s a lot more competitive races like this one in Connecticut where I’ve got to spend my time. And that’s where I’ll spend my time, in places where I can make a difference to help somebody win.”
Astorino’s spokeswoman Jessica Proud said a statement that his campaign “simply can’t believe that the governor, as head of the RGA, would say that.” She said other governors, including members of the RGA’s executive committee, have offered their help.
“With a little more than a hundred days until voters go to the polls, Astorino has a gigantic hole to climb out of to even make the race for governor competitive,” said Siena College pollster Steven Greenberg.
The telephone poll last week of 774 likely New York registered voters has a margin of error of 3.5 percentage points.
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