Christie avoids pledge to finish second term

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Chris Christie stopped short of promising to complete his second term as New Jersey governor Sunday, argued that President Barack Obama lied to Americans about health care insurance and said fat jokes don't bother him.

Those were among the highlights from Mr. Christie's interviews on four television news shows following his overwhelming Nov. 5 re-election, a victory that he has said should be a model for the Republican Party nationally.

Mr. Christie declined to promise to finish all four years of his second term, something he wouldn't be able to do if he were to run for president in 2016 and win.

"Who knows?" he said when asked the question on ABC's "This Week" program. "I don't know."

Mr. Christie also pledged to "continue to do my job and finish the job," while adding that "nobody can make those predictions."

The governor said he's only focused on the next 12 months, when asked about his presidential ambitions on the "Fox News Sunday" program.

"I know everybody is going to be speculating about what may come in my future and lots of other people's future in our party," he said. "But the fact is, I am focused on being the governor of New Jersey and being the chairman of the Republican Governors Association, and I think those two jobs will keep me pretty busy over the next year."

Mr. Christie, 51, won a second term with a margin of 22 percentage points after securing the majority of women and Hispanic voters, both segments his party is trying to more aggressively court.

Should Mr. Christie pursue a 2016 White House bid, his economic record will be among the areas scrutinized.

As governor, unemployment in New Jersey fell to 8.5 percent in August, from 9.7 percent in February 2010. That's still 1.2 percentage points higher than the U.S. average for August, and tied for the seventh-highest among the states.

In "Double Down," a new book about the 2012 campaign, it was written that Republican nominee Mitt Romney decided against picking Mr. Christie as his running mate because there were too many "red flags" tied to his previous career as a lawyer whose work included lobbying for the securities industry.

Asked on ABC about a reference to an elephant on a cover of Time magazine, Mr. Christie said he ignores jokes about his weight.

"If I'm bothered by jokes about my weight, it's time for me to curl up into the fetal position and go home," he said.


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