"The fact of the matter is President Obama won the election pretty comfortably ... I was doing my job as I saw fit to do it. And I told the truth, like I always do. The president did step up and help tremendously in New Jersey."

Christie said that he and the president even discussed politics as they were touring storm damage of the Jersey Shore aboard Marine One.

"I said, you know, I'm not voting for you," Christie said. "And he said, 'I never thought you were.'"

Christie's popularity has soared in his state following the storm, with a poll from Quinnipiac University showing Christie with a 72 percent approval rating in his state. That's the highest approval rating on record for a New Jersey governor.

But there are signs that Christie could be wearing thin on the Republican base. Although a Public Policy Polling poll released last week showed Christie second in a hypothetical Republican primary field, trailing Sen. Marco RubioMarco RubioLongtime GOP incumbent will not seek reelection Overnight Defense: Commander calls North Korea crisis 'worst' he's seen | Trump signs VA order | Dems push Trump to fill national security posts What’s with Trump’s spelling mistakes? MORE (R-Fla.), Christie earned much of his support of centrist voters in the Republican electorate. Rubio's lead, however, was thanks to support from strong conservatives, among the most likely to vote in a presidential primary. Moreover, Christie's net 21-point positive favorability, as judged by Republican primary voters, was the lowest among potential Republican candidates.