(NEW YORK) — New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie was cautiously optimistic on Wednesday morning that Congress will be able to pass a federal relief aid for the victims of Superstorm Sandy.
“I met with the congressional delegation yesterday, I’m hopeful,” he told ABC’s George Stephanopoulos on Good Morning America. “But at the end of the day, it’s never done ’till it’s done. …It’s never done ’till it’s done but I’m going to keep the pressure on.”
Christie, who had particularly pointed criticism at House Republicans after the relief bill was held up in the lower chamber, said that Sandy was “above politics,” and he hopes that both parties can learn to rise above, and learn to listen.
“Sandy is and was above politics. There are certain things that happen in our lives that have to be above politics and both parties should rise above, as hard as that is for them sometimes,” he said. “I’d like them to learn to listen. Listen to people in my state, listen to the people in the state of New York. They’re suffering, they’re hurting, and they don’t understand why they’ve had to wait seven times longer than the victims of Katrina to get any federal aid.”
Christie also discussed the question of gun control in the wake of the tragedy last month in Newtown, Conn., saying that an assault weapons ban has to be part of a larger conversation.
“We have one here,” he said. “I think that’s got to be part of the entire conversation. But if you stop there…You’re short changing the problem.”
The governor left the door open on his 2016 plans, saying his political focus right now is on his re-election campaign in New Jersey.
“You know, anybody who tries to plan four years from now, George, you know, is crazy. The fact of the matter is I’m going to follow the advice my mother gave me, which is to do the job that you have right now as well as you can do it and the future will take care of itself,” Christie said. “What I want to do now is be the governor of New Jersey, as I said, for the last three years, I’d like to do it for the next four.”
However, Christie said he believes he will be more prepared to run in 2016 than he was in 2012.
“I will be more ready than I was in 2012 because I will have done my job for longer and hopefully gotten better,” he said.
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