GOP presidential candidate Chris Christie on Monday took a jab at lawmakers in Congress for thinking they deserve a “round of applause” for not shutting down the government.
“You look at Washington. These jokers take a victory lap for not closing the government and think like they deserve a big round of applause for that. Congratulations — you didn’t close the government you’re supposed to be down there running,” Christie said at a town hall in New Hampshire on Monday.
“But I don’t think that deserves any great round of applause,” he continued. “But they do because they haven’t had a president who has worked with them and made them understand that our job is to work for you. Not the other way around. Our job is to make the tough decisions.”
President Biden signed a stopgap bill passed by Congress last week that prevented a government shutdown ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday. The bill will extend funding at current levels for some agencies and programs until Jan. 19, and all others through Feb. 2.
Christie has been critical of House GOP members since kickstarting his campaign for the White House. After the House voted to boot former Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) from the top spot in early October, Christie repeatedly took aim at the House GOP and called the Speakership chaos an “embarrassment.”
Christie has focused on pooling his resources and time in the state of New Hampshire ahead of the primary election on Jan. 23. He has held numerous town hall events in the state similar to the one held on Monday night, where he talks to voters and answers their questions on his polices and the state of the race.
While former President Trump remains the front-runner for the GOP nomination on a national scale and in New Hampshire, a recent poll by The Washington Post and Monmouth University found Christie in third place in the state. Forty-six percent of registered Republican voters or undeclared voters said they would vote for Trump, 18 percent said they would vote for former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley and 11 percent said they would vote for Christie.