Christie brushes aside concerns about donations to Republican Governors Association

LAVALLETTE – Gov. Chris Christie says it’s of little consequence that New Jersey firms, including some that are otherwise prohibited from donating to state officials, have been sending hundreds of thousands of dollars to the Republican Governors Association.

The governor was responding today to reports that the RGA received more than $700,000 from New Jersey-based construction companies, casinos and engineering firms.

Last week, The Record reported that many businesses that hold government contracts and that are prohibited from direct donations to state officials have been sending money to the RGA.

“Here’s a news flash, there’ll be lots of money spent on the campaign,” Christie said to laughs from a warm crowd in Lavallette Tuesday.

Christie dismissed the idea that the donations were meant to skirt the state’s tough pay-to-play laws and said it’s laughable to think that an association lobbying for Republican governors wouldn’t be sending money to a Republican governor’s race in the state.

“The fact is that nothing that’s been published in the last week or two has been groundbreaking or newsworthy,” he said. “This is going to continue to happen.”

N.J. firms donated over $700,000 to Republican Governors Association

"He’s obviously working very, very hard at it. I mean he’s traveling all over the country as chairman of the [Republican Governors Association] and I think at this point he has as good a chance or better than anybody else. His name is household word all across the country, and I think he would make a great president."
—former U.S. Rep. Jim Saxton (R-3), on Gov. Chris Christie