Huffpost Politics

Chris Christie Praises Obama For Hurricane Sandy Preparation

Posted: Updated:
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) holds a briefing on Hurricane Sandy in North Wildwood, N.J., on Saturday, Oct. 27, 2012. (AP Photo/Mel Evans) | AP

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) put aside his campaigning for Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney on Sunday to praise President Barack Obama for his responsiveness to the Garden State's needs in preparing for Hurricane Sandy.

During a briefing with emergency personnel, residents and press, Christie thanked Obama for holding a conference call with him and governors of other states expected to be impacted by the storm, the Star-Ledger reports.

“I appreciated the president’s outreach today in making sure that we know he’s watching this and is concerned about the health and welfare and safety of the people of the state of New Jersey,” he said.

Christie shortened a campaign trip for Romney in North Carolina and canceled a political trip to Nevada in order to return to New Jersey to focus on the hurricane.

Christie also announced Sunday that he is asking Obama to issue a pre-landfall emergency declaration for New Jersey in order to expedite federal assistance for the state. A press release from Christie's office indicated that such a declaration would allow New Jersey to start requesting federal funds and other aid in advance of the storm. Obama issued a similar declaration for New York state.

During a press briefing Sunday night, Christie criticized the Democratic leaders of the New Jersey state legislature for failing to approve a request to fine companies a higher fee if they don't respond to power outages in a timely manner. The current fine is $100 a day, but Christie wants to raise the fee to $25,000 a day. He made the request in September following a report from the state Board of Public Utilities regarding power companies' response to Hurricane Irene, which left parts of northern New Jersey without power for days.

“The legislature has failed to give me the fining authority I requested," Christie said. "That is a significant disappointment. The fact that they did not come in is a disappointment.”

Christie did indicate during his briefing that he and Bob Hanna, president of the Board of Public Utilities, have been in contact with power companies regarding hurricane preparation.

The governor also addressed the Nov. 6 election during his briefing, saying that Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno (R), who also serves as New Jersey's secretary of state, has been participating in conference calls with other East Coast secretaries of state regarding the hurricane's potential impact on the election. Christie declined to discuss the specifics of Guadagno's conversations, but said that any final decision would occur after the hurricane has passed.

“We will get to our national election when we get to it," Christie said.

UPDATE: Oct. 29 -- President Barack Obama issued a federal emergency declaration for New jersey late Sunday evening in advance of Hurricane Sandy making landfall in the Garden State. The emergency declaration allows federal emergency management officials to assist state officials during the storm and provide federal financial assistance to New Jersey.

Also on HuffPost:

Chris Christie's Greatest Hits
Share this
Current Slide

Suggest a correction

Around the Web

Chris Christie: Obama attack a fool's errand - Mackenzie Weinger ...

Chris Christie: Obama remarks an 'outrage' - Juana Summers - Politico

Chris Christie Tuesday keynote: Bashing Obama as "Chicago ward ...

Video* Chris Christie's epic takedown of President Obama in Virginia

Chris Christie's big hope in GOP convention speech: an Obama ...

Christie thanks Obama for federal resources, rebukes shore stragglers

Chris Christie's wise advice about Hurricane Sandy: 'Don't be stupid'

Entrepreneurs Weigh-In: What Do We Need Over The Next Four Years?

Senate race a tie-breaker for Wisconsin Dems, GOP

Sandy forces Chris Christie to scrap trip

Ticket-splitters become focus of Connecticut campaign

Will Chris Christie wing it on health-care reform?

Obama rally a who's who of high-profile NJ Dems

Video: New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie Attacks Pres. Obama: "What the Hell is ...