New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie's (R) Democratic opponent lectures him that he will not find fried butter, a staple of the Iowa State Fair, in New Jersey in a new Web video attacking the governor for his political travel.
Democratic gubernatorial nominee Barbara Buono's Web video, released Tuesday, paints Christie as more interested in visiting Iowa, home to the first presidential caucuses, than being in New Jersey. The video includes footage of Christie appearing alongside Mitt Romney and Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa). Buono tells Christie that he should be more focused on New Jersey issues than with Iowa snacks.
"Guess what governor? There is no fried butter in Newark -- just 13 percent unemployment," Buono says in the ad.
Democrats have hammered Christie for his out-of-state travel, saying he's setting himself up for a 2016 presidential campaign. Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno (R) and Republican legislative leaders in September defended Christie's travel, saying the governor's meetings with business leaders have helped boost economic development.
Christie's campaign responded to Buono's ad by accusing her of trying to distract voters from her record in the state Senate. Buono trails Christie by more than 30 percentage points in polls.
"Clearly Barbara Buono will say anything to distract from her record of voting 154 times to increase taxes and fees on New Jersey families and property taxes doubling under her watch," Christie campaign spokesman Kevin Roberts said in an email. "Governor Christie has a proven record of putting people over politics to get things done for the people of New Jersey. That’s why leading Democrats across the state are deserting their party’s nominee and supporting his re-election bid."
Christie has picked up endorsements from more than 30 Democratic elected officials in the state, including two of the state's most powerful Democrats, Essex County Executive Joe DiVincenzo and state Sen. Brian Stack. Buono has been backed by one Republican elected official. On Monday, Buono was attacked by Stack for being "clueless and out of touch" about issues in urban areas represented by Stack. New Jersey Democratic Party Chairman John Currie, a Buono ally, counterattacked Stack, saying Buono was better for Stack's constituents than Christie.
On Monday, Christie was endorsed by Bishop Reginald Jackson, the influential head of the Black Minsters Council of New Jersey, who cited the incumbent's support for school choice legislation.