TIME 2016 Election

Christie Draws Contrast With Kasich and Bush in New Hampshire

He made fun of their sunny outlook

Fresh off pointing out Marco Rubio’s repetitive answers in Saturday’s debate, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is mocking rivals John Kasich and Jeb Bush for their professed positivity on the campaign trail.

Speaking to voters in Hampton, N.H. Sunday, Christie was asked how he differentiates himself from the governors, and argued that he’s faced more scrutiny than the pair of presidential aspirants. Crediting them with successful stewardship of their states, Christie maintained that only he had to fight for his accomplishments.

“I’ve known Kasich for a long time. I can tell you his fellow governors call him lots of things, the prince of sunshine and light is not one of them,” Christie quipped, referencing Kasich’s famously prickly personality that rivals his own. “That’s okay, John is in the midst of reforming himself and reinventing himself.”

Christie is trailing the other two governors in New Hampshire, where he needs to outperform both in order to move his campaign to South Carolina.

Noting that Kasich had a Republican legislature, where he has Democratic majorities, Christie added that Kasich had also spent far more time in Washington as a congressman than as a governor, calling Kasich “a creature of that culture” in Washington. “You want somebody who is a pure executive who has the fight,” he said.

“With all due respect, to I think it’s the Columbus Journal it ain’t the New York Times,” Christie added, referring incorrectly to the Columbus Dispatch.

Pivoting to Bush, Christie argued for the need for someone tough to challenge likely Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton. “Go to Jeb today, ask him how the joy is going,” Christie said. “You’ve got to be tough, and when Hillary Clinton is on that stage, you need someone who is every bit as tough and tested as her.”

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