State Watch

NJ lt. gov rips Christie’s beach trip: ‘It’s beyond words’

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New Jersey Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno (R) on Monday blasted Gov. Chris Christie (R) for his beach visit this past weekend.

“If I were governor, I sure wouldn’t be sitting on the beach if taxpayers didn’t have access to state beaches. It’s beyond words,” Guadagno said in a Facebook post.

“We need to end the shutdown now.”

{mosads}Guadagno wrote the shutdown is hurting small businesses and “ordinary New Jerseyans.”

“Instead of political games, Governor Christie, Speaker Prieto and Senate President Sweeney should pass a budget that delivers property tax relief and puts taxpayers first,” she wrote.

Photos surfaced of Christie at the state-owned Island Beach State Park on Saturday night, less than a day after he ordered state parks and beaches to close as a result of the budget stalemate.

The governor left the city’s capital of Trenton for the 10-mile barrier island after briefing New Jersey Legislature members about the impasse, a spokesman confirmed to Politico on Sunday.

Christie joined his family, including his wife and children, and other guests at the park, where authorities are blocking any other visitors from setting foot over the long holiday weekend.

The Republican governor defended his stay in the park amid the closures, saying his post gives him the perks of a residence at Island Beach.

“That’s because the governor has a residence at Island Beach. Others don’t,” Christie reportedly said at a news conference Saturday that came during the first day of the state’s park shutdown.

Christie is reportedly pushing for a $34.7 billion state budget that includes certain provisions for his initiatives like drug treatment.

Christie issued an executive order shutting down the government early Saturday morning.

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