TRENTON, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — Now that New Jersey State Sen. Barbara Buono (D-Edison) has bagged the backing of the state’s largest public workers’ union in her bid for governor, she has focused her campaign on taking down wildly popular incumbent Chris Christie.

As WCBS 880’s Levon Putney reports, Buono is undertaking that mission while introducing herself to most for the first time.

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Name recognition is what it’s all about for now.

“I’m out there fighting a vigorous campaign, and I think that, you know, once I’m out there, and name ID will rise,” she said.

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And the Middlesex County Democratic candidate for governor said that is the beauty of not having a primary, since the other potential Democratic candidates fell back. Buono said she can now spend time getting her name and message out there.

“I would like to think that the party coalesced behind my candidacy because they saw I was the clearest contrast to Governor Christie,” she said.

Buono said candidates do better when they clearly contrast – in her case with a message of inclusion and helping the middle class.

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