Two politicians who could square off in the 2016 presidential race both rallied Thursday for opposing candidates for govenor of Pennsylvania.
Hillary Clinton was in downtown Philadelphia stumping for Democratic nominee Tom Wolf, while New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie campaigned for Republican incumbent Tom Corbett in the suburbs.
Against a backdrop of country music and American flags at the Valley Forge Military Academy in Wayne, Christie said Wolf has “lied” about Corbett’s record on education funding.
“We could pick a nicer word, but it’s the word that fits him,” said Christie. “When he says that Gov. Corbett hasn’t funded education in this state, it’s a lie. It’s an absolute lie.”
Wolf has said Corbett trimmed $1 billion from education spending early in his term, while Corbett has maintained that funding for schools is at record levels.
Christie also said Wolf’s tax proposals are vague and would make Pennsylvania “unaffordable.”
“This is a guy who knows only one thing, and that’s raising taxes,” said Christie.
Wolf wants to overhaul the state’s income taxes so wealthy residents would pay more and middle-class residents would pay less. However, Wolf has not said what the tax rate would be under his plan. The Democrat has also proposed a 5 percent natural gas extraction tax to help fund education.
The Philadelphia suburbs where Christie rallied support for his fellow governor could be important to him in two years. Christie is a potential presidential candidate, and the area will likely play a key role in the next race for the White House.
Christie is also chairman of the Republican Governors Association, which has donated heavily to Corbett’s campaign.