(ASBURY PARK, N.J.) — If Chris Christie runs for president in 2016, political strategists will say it all started Tuesday evening.
In front of a crowd of hundreds at a glossy campaign event, he sent a very clear message to Washington, D.C.
“We stand here tonight showing it is possible to both do your job first, to work together first, to fight for what you believe in, but still stand by your principals and get something done for the people who elected you,” Christie said. “Now listen, I know that if we can do this in Trenton, New Jersey, maybe the folks in Washington D.C. should tune into their TVs right now. See how it’s done.”
He told the New Jersey crowd, “I didn’t need an introduction to all of you, I know you.”
“We still fight, we still yell, but when we fight we fight for those things that really matter,” Christie said, clearly referring to the constant bickering in the nation’s capitol. “While we may not always agree, we show up. We don’t just show up in the places where we are comfortable we show up in the places we are uncomfortable.”
Christie continued, saying, “You don’t just show up six months before an election – you show up four years before one.”
And if the message wasn’t crystal clear he said, “a dispirited America angry with the dysfunction in Washington, looks to New Jersey,” before noting his appeal with traditionally Democratic constituencies in the state.
“Are we really working African-Americans and Hispanics, farmers and city dwellers?” Christie said.
And in a nod to the tough talking he’s known for, he said what his constituents “have told me over the past four years more than anything is that they want truth.”
He noted his work to rebuild after last year’s superstorm Sandy promising to continue and he not so subtly referenced the times he battled with his own party over funding.
“I will not let anyone, anything, any political party, any governmental entity…or any force get in the way of the completion of my mission,” he said.
If Christie ends up running in 2016 he will, of course, leave in his second term, but he told the crowd he “did not seek a second term to do small things.”
“I sought a second term to get things done now watch me do it.”
Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio