Christie calls Lautenberg ‘a fighter’

TRENTON – Gov. Chris Christie described the late U.S. Sen. Frank Lautenberg as “a fighter” Monday morning after news of his death.

“I had remarks that I was going to share, … [but] it seems to me to be inappropriate to do that at this point,” said Christie, speaking at the 2013 New Jersey Governor’s Conference for Women.

“It’s no mystery that Sen. Lautenberg and I didn’t always agree. In fact, it’s probably more honest to say that we very often didn’t agree. And we had some pretty good fights between us over time, battles on philosophy and the role of government,” he said. “But, never was Sen. Lautenberg to be understated as an advocate for the causes he believed in and as an adversary in the political world.”

Christie was slated to give a keynote address at the conference but said it would be inappropriate to give any other speech. He said the best way to describe the late senator is as “a fighter.”

“I think the best way to describe Frank Lautenberg and the way he would want to be described to all of you today is as a fighter,” Christie said.

“Sen. Lautenberg fought for the things he believed in and sometimes he just fought because he liked to,” the governor said to sober laughs.

Christie asked attendees to say a prayer for Lautenberg and his family.

“Today is a sad day for the people of New Jersey,” he said. “It’s a loss for everyone.”

The Republican governor said Lautenberg has been a great example for the people of New Jersey.

“I give him praise on a life well lived,” Christie said.

"Since the print publication of this list, Christie, in his capacity as chairman of the Republican Governors Association, helped decisively turn the midterm elections in the Republicans' favor, which makes him a bit more influential than we initially gave him credit for, post-Bridgegate. So when your state governments do absolutely nothing for you for the next four years, be sure to thank him!"
—GQ