New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) said Friday that Mitt Romney’s comments that President Obama won the election by giving groups “gifts” were wrong.
Christie said he agreed with Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R), who said the comments were "absolutely wrong," but avoided directly criticizing Romney. He also said it was time to pivot from the election and move on.
“But the bottom line is we lost, and so now what we need to do as leaders of our party is pivot and do our jobs. If we do our jobs well, people will put us back into office.”
Christie himself has been accused by some Republicans of hurting Romney in the final week before the election by praising President Obama's handling of the federal response to Hurricane Sandy, which devastated Christie's state.
Asked whether Romney should “stop having conference calls,” Christie said that was up to the former Massachusetts governor.
“I mean, listen. Mitt Romney's a friend of mine. I understand that he's very upset about having lost the election, very disappointed,” Christie continued. “I've never run for president. We've lost elections, I've lost elections, but never for the presidency. I'm sure it stings terribly.”
Christie said Romney is a “good man” but that his election loss likely is “still a little raw.”
He said the comments Romney made were regrettable, but he was not “going to bury the guy for it.”
Romney has come under criticism for a call to donors this week in which he credited Obama’s victory to policy "gifts" he gave to different voting groups, including women, young voters, African-Americans and Hispanics.
“What the president — president's campaign did was focus on certain members of his base coalition, give them extraordinary financial gifts from the government, and then work very aggressively to turn them out to vote," Romney said during the call.
Jindal rejected that notion, and argued Romney’s comments make it more difficult for the GOP to win national elections.