In his most combative comments since scandal engulfed his administration earlier this year, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) sniped at the current push for "mediocre" economic equality, comparing it to bickering children.
Christie suggested the pursuit of income equality runs counter to fundamental American ideals of hard work producing bigger and better opportunities.
“You want income equality? That is mediocrity,” he said, according to The New York Times. “Everybody can have an equal, mediocre salary.”
He compared the debate over the widening income gap to his 10-year-old daughter fighting with his 13-year-old son: “You did this for him — that’s not fair,” he said, mimicking them.
The governor was speaking to an audience of 1,500 gathered at the Economic Club of Chicago during his fundraising swing through the state on behalf of the Republican Governors Association.
Christie is known nationally for his brash, no-nonsense style, but he’s toned that down in recent months, as he’s been forced to tackle the ongoing scandal surrounding his administration’s role in orchestrating closures on the George Washington Bridge as an act of apparent political retribution.
Christie was largely granted a reprieve from the scandal during the Chicago event, focusing more on praise of former President George W. Bush and criticism of Obama’s foreign policy vision. His comments were reminiscent of the Christie from as recently as December, who was seen by Republicans and Democrats alike as the GOP’s most likely presidential nominee.
But he did answer one question about the situation, and again asserted his innocence.
“Large organizations are dynamic and incredibly creative because they’re inhabited by human beings,” he said, according to The Star-Ledger. “They’re also incredibly flawed because they’re inhabited by human beings. So some people that worked for me made incredible mistakes in judgment.”