New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie did his monthly call-in show “Ask the Governor” on Thursday night where he takes questions from Garden State voters, as well as the host on NJ101.5 and he answered several questions about his potential run for the White House in 2016, as well as talking football.
Here are seven things Christie revealed about 2016 (and a bonus one about football):
1. No Decision Yet. Christie was asked if he had made a decision yet about his political future and he said no. When pressed whether he just wasn’t ready to announce he confirmed he had not even made the decision yet.
2. Can His Family Veto? No. Christie said he spoke to his family over their Christmas vacation about his decision, although he didn’t reveal exactly what they spoke about saying instead “we had a good vacation, there were no punches thrown, no pouting, no people going into their own separate rooms, everybody got along great and we had a great vacation and we had a lot of good talks as a family about that and lots of other issues too.”
When asked if his family has the right to “veto” his 2016 decision, he answered, “no, no,” noting “the thing is that anybody who tells you their family doesn’t come to the top of their mind when deciding something like this is just not telling you the truth.”
3. Relax, Everybody. Christie said other possible candidates’ moves like Jeb Bush and Mitt Romney won’t affect his decision and he has a message for “supporters of mine, potential donors of mine, staff” and that is to “relax.”
“No one is voting for another 12 1/2 months, first voting in Iowa is in the beginning of February of ‘16 so everybody just calm down, you know be relaxed, look at me, look how relaxed I look,” Christie said. “I’m not going to allow other people dictate to me my time frame and as I’ve said before the entry or withdrawal of any one particular candidate or a number of them will not determine what I do.”
4. PAC Plans. We learned earlier this week Christie will set up a political action committee as early this month, but he said of the PAC that will help pay for political travel around the country and be a place for donors to start putting their money that no decision has been made.
“There are lots of people making lots of suggestions to me about the best way for me to continue to get to know the country better,” he said. “There’s a whole bunch of different options on the table, but I haven’t made any final decision about what to do.”
5. Let’s Stay Friends. He was asked about if his friendship with the Bush family could impact his run and he acknowledged their relationship, but said “friends have run against each other before. ... It is just he way it goes.”
“If Jeb decides ultimately to run and I decide ultimately to run I think I’ve said this to you before I hope that what we would do is to run based upon our particular vision of the country and our party and may the best person win and I don’t think that means it has to end a relationship either between me and Jeb or between me and the president and Laura,” he said.
6. Will Stay on as Governor. Christie confirmed again he would not step down from the governorship if he decides to run and as for all the heat he got from traveling out of state as head of the Republican Governors Association he called the critics “partisan hacks.”
“I’m sitting here with this cell phone, right? With my iPad, with Skype, with FaceTime, I am never out of touch as governor even now because most planes have Wi-Fi and you can get email when you are on the plane,” Christie said. “This is not the 1800s, it’s not even the 1970s, we are in touch all the time and my ability to be in touch with folks is unimpeded by this and remember something in terms of my ability to interact with the legislature they are usually just down at the statehouse at most twice a week. I’m usually the guy who’s there a lot more days than they are. ... This is not a real impediment to me being able to do my job, what it is is more it’s an impediment on my free time and my time with my family than it is on my job.”
7. Will it be Nasty? Christie said the GOP primary could be a civil one “given some of the people that we are talking about and to the extent if it becomes difficult and divisive it depends on how those people who are not on the receiving end of that deal with it.
"It’s a wide open seat in both parties, there will be a lot of competition,” he added.
8. Let's Move to Football. Christie was also asked about his relationship with Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones and how it became controversial. He said he first met Jones in September, 2013 and he first spoke with him in the summer of 2013 when he invited Christie to a game next time he was in Dallas. Christie said Jones called himself a "supporter" of his and he was "thrilled" he was a Cowboys fan. He said since they met at a game that September they have been "friends since." But, as for stories that revealed a business relationship between Jones and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which Christie heads along with the Gov. Andrew Cuomo, he said he had no knowledge of it whatsoever and it was instead being pushed by "partisan hacks who run around" and push the story.
"The facts don't get in the way of a good story from these folks, just craziness, just craziness, you know, aluminum foil on their head conspiracy theorists," he said. And as for who he is rooting for this weekend now that his beloved Cowboys are out, he said "I don't root for anybody."
"Once the Cowboys are out I don't root for anybody, the only way I'd root for anybody is if the Jets were still around and as I've always told people the Jets are kind of my secondary team," he said. "The orange sweater is at the dry cleaners."