Governor Chris Christie in Birmingham to campaign with Governor - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

Governor Chris Christie in Birmingham to campaign with Governor Robert Bentley

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A Republican governor who may have his eyes on the White House came to Alabama to support Governor Robert Bentley's reelection bid.

Governor Chris Christie praised Bentley's leadership in Alabama.

Bentley also praised Christie, saying he'd made a great president should he choose to run.

Christie made sure to send the message to Alabamians that he's conservative and proud of it. He doesn't want the fact that he's a Republican in a blue state to scare anyone.

"Folks believe that somehow when you're a republican from New Jersey that you're not going to be conservative,” said Christie. “I think that's the biggest thing that folks in Alabama as they get to know me better will understand. I'm the first pro-life governor since Roe versus Wade, in New Jersey."

Christie and Governor Robert Bentley had only one public appearance. It was at the Southern Research Institute.

Governor Bentley touted the facility's success in finding cures for diseases, “They now are developing testing on things like the Ebola virus, working with the people in Texas. It is a great institute and we wanted to showcase that to Governor Christie. We want to welcome him to the state."

Researchers showed the governors around a lab which uses robotic testing for drug discovery.

"The stuff that's happened here in Alabama- you look at this institute that's been here since 1941, Governor Bentley's Accelerate Alabama Program has been extremely successful,” said Christie.

The New Jersey Governor also heaped praise on Bentley's leadership to cut state spending, saying it should be an example to the rest of the country.

"And so I'm glad to be here as Chairman of the Republican Governors Association to put a real spotlight on the things Governor Bentley has achieved,” said Christie.

After the tour, the governors attended two private fundraising events. The money raised will help the Bentley campaign and the Republican Governor's Association.

Christie says 19 Republican governors are running for re-election.

"And I will tell you right now, I think each and every one of them is in very good shape,” he added. “What you're seeing now is democratic governors playing defense."

Winning red in blue states is something Christie is no stranger to. But, can he take that to a national level?

Bentley believes Christie would make a great president.

"I don't know what his decision will be,” said Bentley. “That's up to him. He certainly has the attributes and he has the charisma and he cares about people."

Bentley is opposed by Democrat Parker Griffith in this November's General Election. Griffith's campaign says he spent the day on the phone with hospital administrators talking about the need for Medicaid expansion.

Bentley opposes Medicaid expansion.

From Alabama, Christie heads to Biloxi, Mississippi for events with the state's Republican Governor.


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