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Atlantic City mayor accuses Christie of 'double standard' in Sandy response

During an interview with CNN’s “Starting Point,” the mayor said Christie did not criticize local leaders in the affluent town he toured Wednesday with President Obama, despite having lobbed criticism at Langford in the hours after the storm.

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Christie and Langford have argued in recent days over the mayor's decision to open shelters in Atlantic City despite an order from the governor to fully evacuate. Langford has said he encouraged all residents to leave, but that the city wanted those who decided not to heed the warnings to have a place to go.

"I think it's reprehensible for the governor to spew the rhetoric that he did based on falsehoods," Langford said during an interview Thursday with CNN. "The governor made a statement that just simply was not true when he said that I countermanded his order."

But Langford went on to say that he found it "interesting" that Christie and President Obama had visited a shelter in Brigantine, N.J., a wealthy enclave just north of Atlantic City.

"So what the governor falsely accused me of doing actually happened in Brigantine, and yet they're being jovial about it," Langford said. "That's a double standard, and I think the people can see for themselves what's really going on here."

CNN host Soledad O'Brien pressed Langford to explain exactly what he meant by a "double standard."

"As I said, you've got one community that's rather affluent, and who the officials denied the governor's order and set up their own shelter. You have another city that's an urban area, where we heeded the call, parroted the message that the governor sent, which was for everybody to evacuate, and then the governor falsely accused us of not heeding his warning, yet everything in Brigantine is hunky-dory," Langford replied.

O'Brien then asked Langford if the "double standard" was "between affluent and not particularly affluent."

"You be the judge," Langford replied.

At the event in Brigantine, Christie said those who "disregarded my admonition to get the hell out of here" were "forgiven this time."

"When you all look around and see all this destruction, that's fine, all of that stuff can be replaced," Christie said. "When you look to your right or your left, your husband or wife, your son or your daughter, those are the things that can't be replaced."