GREENWICH, Conn. (AP) — New Jersey Governor Chris Christie greeted supporters and patrons at a Greenwich diner Monday, only to be followed by a protest near a private fundraiser for Gubernatorial candidate Tom Foley.
“I know how tough it’s been in Connecticut the last number of years and I know Tom’s the right guy,” Christie said at the Glory Days Diner.
Christie says he’ll only campaign in states where he thinks the candidate has a good chance and stressed that Foley lost by a small margin four years ago. He thinks Foley will give employment a boost and he’s endorsing him before the primary on August 12.
“He earned my support by the way he conducted himself last time and the way he’s conducted himself over the last four years just continued to remain involved in Connecticut and the issues that are important to folks,” said Christie. “So, it’s never an easy decision to make, but remember the state party here endorsed him.”
As Christie made his way to the private Belle Haven community, about 200 protesters lined the streets outside from the Connecticut Against Gun Violence chanting ‘not one more’.
“Connecticut has very strong gun laws,” said Ron Pinciaro, executive director of CT Against Gun Violence. “You probably know we have the 2nd strongest state gun laws in the nation and we have the 6th lowest rate of gun deaths and we’d like to keep it that way, and we don’t feel you get there by vetoing strong important gun bills.”
About 20 counter protesters also gathered on the other side of the street.
“We need our second amendment rights,” said Stamford’s Philip Balestriere. “The government does it little by little. First we do this. Then, we take that away. Before you know it – boom – you got no guns.”
Earlier this month, Christie vetoed a bill on his desk that would have limited gun magazines capacities to max out at 10 bullets down from 15 rounds. He said the bill was not effective. At that time some parents of Newtown victims tried to meet with him and they say he refused.
“First of all that’s not true,” Christie said. “I met with Newtown families a year ago. I talked about the full range of gun control issues they were concerned about. I didn’t feel it was necessary to meet with them again especially after I had made the decision.”
News 8 asked Foley if he disagrees with the decision Christie made on ammunition rounds. “Like I said, he (Christie) represents people in a different state I’m representing voters in Connecticut,” Foley said, “and I’ve been all around this state for a year and people are talking to me about the slow job recovery. They’re talking to me about high taxes . They’re talking about the high cost of electricity, all things that impact working families. They feel like something has been taken away from them . The future prospects of the state. Their own futures and the futures of their children have been taken away from them”
“We had a different set of policies. We’re going to introduce a pro-growth agenda,” Foley said.
“Tom and I will have disagreements about issues over time,” Christie said. “That may not be one of them, but there will be disagreements. We’re different people.”
The Republican primary is August 12. Christie said he plans on visiting Connecticut several more times before the general election on November 4.
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