Skip Navigation

Close and don't show again.

Your browser is out of date.

You may not get the full experience here on National Journal.

Please upgrade your browser to any of the following supported browsers:

Christie Blasts Washington-Style Obstructionism Christie Blasts Washington-Style Obstructionism

This ad will end in seconds
 
Close X

Not a member? Learn More »

Forget Your Password?

Don't have an account? Register »

Reveal Navigation
 

 

The Trail: 2012 Presidential News from the Field / campaign 2012

Christie Blasts Washington-Style Obstructionism

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie speaks at a New Jersey Chamber of Commerce event earlier this year.(Chet Susslin)

photo of Rebecca Kaplan
July 9, 2012

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie on Monday joined former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush in lambasting the politics of obstructionism in Washington. In a speech to the Brookings Institution, the Republican vice presidential contender recalled his budget-cutting, pension-reforming battles — and ultimately, compromises — with the New Jersey Legislature.

“I would not ask anybody to compromise their principles. There’s too much of that in politics today to begin with. But I also have to get everyone to acknowledge you’re not going to get everything you want. And once you get acknowledgement on both sides of that equation, you can find and force compromise as an executive,” Christie said, adding that a good leader has to be able to “walk and chew gum at the same time.”

He contrasted what he described as his successful working relationship with a Democratic legislature with the “failed leadership by both parties” in Washington, which he said has created the “illusion” that nothing can get done at the federal level.

 

“Leadership is not just about obstructionism,” Christie said. “Leadership is also not about caving every time you get pushed. Leadership is about nuance and about understanding and communicating to people, ‘Here is what I stand for and on these issues I will not be moved,’ but then on other issues, leaving room for discussion and accomplishing principled compromise where it can be.”

Despite his call for bipartisanship, Christie also seemed to be gearing up for a summertime political battle with Democrats back home over lowering taxes for the middle class after a last-minute deal fell through recently. He accused state Democrats of refusing to deal in good faith because they want to deprive him of the opportunity to tout the tax cut at the Republican National Convention in August.

But he also assumed a portion of the blame, saying that the responsibility for problem-solving lies with the chief executive. He criticized a culture of “political consultants whispering in our ear, telling us to say as little as possible.”

“If they kick you out of office, they kick you out of office,” he said. “It seems to me it’s not the end of the world.”

Last month, Bush also lamented the hyper-partisanship in Washington. During a Bloomberg News breakfast meeting with reporters in June, Bush suggested that his father and even President Reagan would have had a “hard time” fitting into today’s GOP because they were willing to work with congressional Democrats.

More The Trail: 2012 Presidential News from the Field
Job Board
Search Jobs
Digital and Content Manager, E4C
American Society of Civil Engineers | New York, NY
PRODUCT REVIEW ENGINEER
American Society of Civil Engineers | CA
Neighborhood Traffic Safety Services Intern
American Society of Civil Engineers | Bellevue, WA
United Technologies Research Fellow
American Society of Civil Engineers | New York, NY
Process Engineering Co-op
American Society of Civil Engineers | Conshohocken, PA
Electrical Engineer Co-op
American Society of Civil Engineers | Findlay, OH
Application Engineer/Developer INTERN - Complex Fluids
American Society of Civil Engineers | Brisbane, CA
Application Engineer - Internships CAE/CFD Metro Detroit
American Society of Civil Engineers | Livonia, MI
Chief Geoscientist
American Society of Civil Engineers
Application Engineer - Internships CAE/CFD Metro Boston
American Society of Civil Engineers | Burlington, MA
Professional Development Program Engineer
American Society of Civil Engineers | Farmington Hills, MI
Civil Enginering Intern - Water/Wastewater/Site-Development
American Society of Civil Engineers | Sacramento, CA
Staff Accountant
American Society of Civil Engineers | Englewood, CO
Biomedical Service Internship Position
American Society of Civil Engineers | Flint, MI
 
Comments
comments powered by Disqus