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Chris Christie: Lessons in Fiscal Irresponsibility

***This memo has been updated with breaking news that New Jersey’s credit rating has been downgraded for a record-matching sixth time under Christie’s tenure.***

From: Michael Czin, DNC Press Secretary
To: Interested Parties
Date: May 14, 2014
Re: Chris Christie: Lessons in Fiscal Irresponsibility

Today, Chris Christie will travel to Washington, DC where he will speak at the Peter G. Peterson Foundation’s 2014 Fiscal Summit, “Our Economic Future.”

Christie claims that under his leadership there’s been a ‘comeback’ in New Jersey, and other Republican governors have elevated Christie by electing him the chair of the Republican Governors Association. The title of Christie’s discussion is called, “Lessons From The Statehouse: Balancing Fiscal Reform With Pro-Growth Investments,” but the fact is that the economic wellbeing of the state is in trouble as a result of his time in office.

“If the economy gets much worse in New Jersey, Gov. Christie may want to close another bridge.” – Mark McKinnon, former George W. Bush strategist, to Politico

As a result of Christie’s overly optimistic revenue projections, the state now faces a massive $800 million budget shortfall.  Christie hasn’t yet filled in the public on how he plans to make up for the shortfall that he and his administration apparently didn’t see coming (despite warnings from the legislature’s chief budget officer) – but budget-watchers predict that Christie will need to make further draconian cuts to programs that New Jersey residents rely on just to fill his budget hole.

The fact is that the current budget shortfall is just the latest economic failure from Christie’s tenure.

Here are a few of the lowlights from Christie’s economic record:

  • Last night the credit rating agency Moody’s downgraded New Jersey’s credit rating. That is New Jersey’s SIXTH credit downgrade during Christie’s tenure – tying the state record for the most credit downgrades for a New Jersey governor. [Bergen Record, 4/13/14]
  •  Under Christie, the state’s credit has been downgraded a total of SIX times, incl
  • New Jersey’s private-sector growth rate ranked 46th out of 50 in the nation under Christie and New Jersey maintains the highest unemployment among its neighboring states. [Asbury Park Press, 1/6/14; Bureau of Labor and Statistics, 4/18/14]
  • Under Christie’s leadership, New Jersey has lagged in job recovery – regaining only half the jobs it lost during the recession, while neighboring New York has recovered all of them under Democratic leadership. [Bloomberg, 3/18/14]

Christie’s sure to address the Peterson Conference with his customary bluster and swagger – but he’ll need a lot more than that to compensate for his failed economic record as Governor.

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