Christie: ‘New Jersey, you’re stuck with me’

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie has ended the speculation.

He said Tuesday he will definitely not run for president in 2012.

After reconsidering his previous decision not to enter the race, Christie said that now is not his time to run for national office.

Despite weeks of wooing by influential Republican donors, Christie said he won’t abandon his commitment to fix a broken New Jersey.

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“This is not the time to leave unfinished business for me. The stakes are too high and the consequences are too real,” he said. “So, New Jersey, whether you like it or not, you’re stuck with me.”

Christie says he’s not prepared to make an endorsement of any of the current Republican presidential candidates. He has not ruled out a future run for the White House and said he has not started to think about seeking re-election as governor in 2013.

His decision not to run for president garnered mixed reactions from New Jersey lawmakers.

Republican Sen. Kevin O’Toole said it might have hurt the GOP’s agenda in New Jersey if Christie had left the governor’s job early.

“It’s always helpful when you have such a dynamic leader like Chris,” O’Toole said. “Had he gone away, I’m sure it would have been a little bit harder or take us a little more time to effectuate his reforms.”

New Jersey Democratic Party Chairman John Wisniewski said he expects every policy decision Christie makes from now on will take a possible future presidential run into consideration.

“Chris Christie is going to be embarking on an agenda to continue to woo the conservative right so that he can be a candidate for the presidency in 2016,” Wisniewski predicted.

Assembly Speaker Sheila Oliver said she hopes the governor will focus his attention on the needs of working-class New Jerseyans.




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