New Jersey governor Chris Christie defended his record on health-care during tonight’s first gubernatorial debate.
“We’ve enforced the law here in New Jersey,” Christie said of Obamacare, “and we’ve expanded Medicaid in New Jersey, and we’ve made health care more available to folks … by increasing funding to hospitals, by increasing funding to federally qualified health centers, and by allowing the federal government to come in and set up an insurance exchange, effective October 1.”
“We’ve complied with the law completely,” he added. “I don’t agree with the law, but we’ve complied with it.”
Christie defended his opposition to plan that would hike the state’s minimum wage by $1, saying that, “The money comes from the pockets and the hard works of the small business owners, the people who own the convenience stores, the bodegas,” and noting that the National Federation of Independent Businesses had expressed concern the policy could lead to the loss of thousands of jobs.
“I believe we should increase the minimum wage,” Christie said, “and I put forward a bipartisan compromise to the legislature, said let’s raise it over three years. Let’s do it responsibly so businesses can plan that expense.”
Asked in a lightning round if he’d ever voted for a Democrat, Christie quipped, “I haven’t, but I’m hopeful.”
He also chose to ask his opponent, state senator Barbara Buono, if she regretted voting for any of the 154 taxes and fees she has supported over the years. Watch: