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Governor Christie on 'Meet the Press'

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Uploaded on Nov 7, 2010

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie was guest on NBC's 'Meet the Press' with David Gregory on Sunday, November 7, 2010. (Transcript Below)

MR. DAVID GREGORY: We now turn to the aforementioned Republican who has emerged as a leader of his party, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie.
Welcome to the program.
GOV. CHRIS CHRISTIE (R-NJ): Thank you, David.
MR. GREGORY: Good to have you here.
GOV. CHRISTIE: Happy to be here.
MR. GREGORY: When you talk about the response from the voters on Election Day, something's very curious. We know some of the feelings about the Democrats, about President Obama's policies, but look at this from the exit polls in terms of the opinion of political parties.
Republicans didn't fare too well either; 52 percent unfavorable rating. What does that say about the Republican Party today?
GOV. CHRISTIE: You know, I think what it says is what I was saying all over the country, that's it's put up or shut up time for our party. You know, we lost our way last decade, David, we did, and people expect us to do better. And if the Republican Party wants to come back, they're going to have to do what they said they were going to do. I mean, because if
they don't, we're going to be sent to the wilderness for a long time, and we're going to deserve it.
MR. GREGORY: What does that mean? What do they have to put up?
GOV. CHRISTIE: What they have to do is they say they want, and, and we're doing it in New Jersey: smaller government, less spending, less regulation, lower taxes. That's what the public is saying that they want. And if you look at what we've done in New Jersey, David, we're delivering on that. We're not fixed yet, but we're on the track to being fixed, closing an $11 billion budget deficit without any new or increased taxes, cutting the corporate business tax. We're doing things to try to create an environment where private sector jobs can grow.
MR. GREGORY: And, and I want to talk about some of the choices you made in New Jersey. But, you know, you heard Senator DeMint, and there's a lot of Republicans talking about cutting the deficit, cutting the budget, but they're not specific. He wasn't specific. He talks about Paul Ryan, who has some ideas about Medicare and changing the way that's structured,
indeed, making some cuts. Paul Ryan in the House, he's from Wisconsin, doesn't have support among establishment Republicans. There are 15 Republicans who stood up behind him in terms of making these cuts. Are Republicans really making good when Senator DeMint and others aren't specific about the cuts they're going to make to entitlements or to defense, to the big ticket items that really move the budget?
GOV. CHRISTIE: Well, let me tell you what's--where the leadership's going to come from. You have 11 Republican governors and a Democratic governor, Andrew Cuomo in New York, who have said we can't raise taxes and we have to cut spending in everything. In New Jersey what we did was we cut spending in every department, a 9 percent cut in real spending,
not projected spending, real spending year over year. Find another state that did that and, and we'll go and talk about it. I mean, we made real hard decisions, and I cut some programs that we would've liked to have kept.
MR. GREGORY: Mm-hmm.
GOV. CHRISTIE: But we're broke. We don't have the money anymore. And so I hope that what these governors, Republicans and Democrats, will show Washington is you can do this and you have to do it.
MR. GREGORY: I asked Senator DeMint about sacrifice, and he said, `Oh, we don't want to, we don't want to break our promise to our seniors'. In your state, what are you telling people they have to sacrifice and what do Republicans around the country have to tell Americans they have to sacrifice if they want to bring the size of government under control and the deficit under control?
GOV. CHRISTIE: We told everybody there has to be shared sacrifice among everyone, and let me be specific. We cut every department of state government. We cut funding to K to 12 education. We are proposed real pension and benefit reforms on public sector workers, increasing the retirement age, eliminating COLAs, things that are really going to bring the pension problem back under control. We cut all of this spending in the state in every state department, David, every state department. From environmental protection, to military and veterans affairs, all the way through had to sustain a cut. Those are the type of things you have to do to show people you really mean shared sacrifice. Everyone came to the table and everybody had to contribute...

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