(NEW YORK) — New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s first town hall since the Bridgegate story exploded last month was postponed due to snow, but he will be fundraising Tuesday evening in New York City for the National Republican Senatorial Committee, another example of the possible 2016 presidential candidate trying to broaden his national message while he deals with the fallout from the scandal at home.
“Governor Christie is speaking at the welcome reception for the Winter NRSC Majority Makers Policy Retreat,” a Christie aide told ABC. The aide noted that Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell will be attending the event, which will be held at the Harvard Club. “This is an event where donors interact with senators and candidates. The governor will be talking about the importance of winning back the Senate majority this fall, and how the Republican Party can compete and win in all corners of this country, including blue states.”
It’s a topic Christie discusses frequently, noting at an event in Chicago just last week that the GOP should be focused on “winning the election,” not winning the argument.
“Political parties are there to win elections because when you win you get to govern, and when you get to govern you get to make change and that’s what we should be focused on as the Republican Party. It is time to win again,” Christie said at the Economic Club of Chicago.
Christie has kept up a robust fundraising schedule since the scandal broke, raising cash in Florida, Texas, and Chicago for the Republican Governors Association where he serves as chair. Although Christie did not hold any public events with GOP candidates or office holders he did rake in the money, raising $1.5 million in Texas and $1 million in Chicago.
Last week the RGA reported it has raised $6 million with the help of Christie and other GOP governors. He has other fundraising stops in Massachusetts, Utah, Georgia, Connecticut and Michigan on the calendar and will make a trip to Washington, D.C. later this week for a National Governors Association meeting.
His 110th town hall was canceled Monday night because of a threat of snow and will be rescheduled. It will be focused on the state’s continued recovery since 2012′s Superstorm Sandy, but he may be faced with questions about the bridge lane closings.
Christie came under fire last month when emails were released indicating top aides to Christie closed access lanes to the George Washington Bridge, the country’s busiest span, as political retribution against a Democratic mayor who refused to endorse his re-election bid. Both the New Jersey legislature and the U.S. attorney are investigating.
Christie has repeatedly denied knowing about the lane closures before they occurred and has said he had nothing to do with the decision to close them. There has been no evidence directly linking Christie to the lane closures.
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Kevin Liptak, CNN
Theodore Schleifer, CNN
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Ruth Brown and Lis Stewart, Idaho Press-Tribune