(Clive, IA) Governor Chris Christie (R-NJ) headlined Iowa Governor Terry Branstad’s annual Birthday Bash. The event drew close 1000 Iowa Republicans on Saturday night to the Seven Flags Event Center in Clive, IA. U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley, Republican U.S. Senate candidate Joni Ernst, Congressman Tom Latham (R-Iowa), Iowa 3rd Congressional District candidate David Young, and Iowa 2nd Congressional District candidate Mariannette Miller-Meeks were among those who attended.
Christie, known for this rhetorical flourish, gave a more subdued speech honoring Branstad who is poised to be the United States’ longest serving governor when he wins reelection to a sixth term as expected.
“This is why I don’t get insulted at all when he is called the hardest working governor in America. He is getting ready to win his sixth term as governor of Iowa. I am exhausted just thinking about that,” Christie joked.
Christie who first visited Iowa four years ago to campaign for Branstad who left the private sector to run for a 5th term said he has been asked why he is visiting Iowa so much. “Because Terry Branstad asked me to come to Iowa, and when Terry Branstad asks you to come to Iowa you do not say no,” Christie stated. Christie was also in Iowa in July for a fundraiser for Branstad in Marion, IA.
Christie is returning to Iowa on Thursday to campaign for Branstad, Republican U.S. Senate nominee Joni Ernst, and Marianette Miller-Meeks, the Republican nominee for Iowa’s 2nd Congressional District in Burlington.
Christie, as chair of the Republican Governors Association, has traveled to 35 states since December 1st. Saturday launched a four-day swing for Christie who will be visiting 14 states to see Republicans elected as governor.
Christie turned his focus on the Obama administration.
“America used to be in control of events both here at home and around the world. Now it seems that our fate is being dictated to us by others,” Christie said. “The American people are not any less smart than they used to be. It is not because of ingenuity, it is not because of integrity, it is not because we have any less energy. It is not because we are not working even harder today than we have before. I would suggest to you it is because we have an extraordinary vacuum of leadership in this country and people outside of America no longer know what America stands for, no longer knows what America is willing to fight for, no longer knows where we are willing to draw the line, no one knows when we will put our hand down and say ‘enough’ because of the lack of leadership that we have in the White House.”
Christie contrasted President Obama with Branstad. “He is a strong leader who speaks his mind, who thinks through problems, who reaches his hand across the aisle. That is not a sign of weakness, everyone. That is a sign of strength and confidence, and by doing that he has accomplished things for the people of Iowa. Accomplished things that many people thought were impossible, and the reason many people think it is impossible because they look at Washington, DC and see nothing good happening for our country,” Christie added.
Christie called President Obama an “obstructionist-in-chief” of things that would help th bolster the economy. He also criticized judicial activism that has taken place at the federal level. Christie has been criticized recently for nominations to the New Jersey Supreme Court.
Listen to audio of Christie’s speech below.
Listen to audio of Terry Branstad’s remarks.
Listen to audio of Joni Ernst’s remarks.
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