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GOP activists defend Christie at national meeting

January 24, 2014 • National News


Republican National Committee (RNC) Chairman Reince Priebus speaks at the Republican National Committee winter meeting in Washington, Friday, Jan. 24, 2014. Seeking to shorten the Republican presidential selection process, the GOP moves to hold its national convention in late June or early July in 2016, roughly two months sooner than usual. Iowa and New Hampshire would retain their coveted spots atop the presidential primary calendar. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

WASHINGTON (AP) — Chris Christie may have been nearly 200 miles away, but his struggles in New Jersey buzzed through the hallways of a Washington hotel this week as hundreds of Republican officials gathered to debate the GOP’s future.

Party activists from Mississippi to Massachusetts defended Christie’s leadership, insisting this is no time to write his political obituary. But they also said it’s far too soon to grant him presidential front-runner status.

Christie’s popularity has fallen in recent weeks amid revelations that senior members of his administration helped create massive traffic jams last fall, apparently to exact political retribution against a Democratic New Jersey mayor. Additional allegations of political bullying have emerged as federal prosecutors and Democratic legislators probe the matter. Four people close to Christie have been fired or have resigned.

A roadblock for a possible presidential run? More like a speed bump, one activist said Friday. It could even help Christie among party conservatives by turning him into a martyr, said Login to read more

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