Obama, New Jersey governor to reunite Tuesday for storm tour

WASHINGTON Mon May 27, 2013 5:20pm EDT

President Barack Obama speaks after a tour around the damage done by Hurricane Sandy in Brigantine, New Jersey, in this file October 31, 2012 photo. New Jersey Governor Chris Christie stands behind Obama. REUTERS/Larry Downing

President Barack Obama speaks after a tour around the damage done by Hurricane Sandy in Brigantine, New Jersey, in this file October 31, 2012 photo. New Jersey Governor Chris Christie stands behind Obama.

Credit: Reuters/Larry Downing

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama will join New Jersey Governor Chris Christie on Tuesday for a tour of the Jersey Shore damaged by Superstorm Sandy, replaying a scene from last year that some observers believe helped Obama win re-election.

Christie, a Republican, gave Obama, a Democrat, blunt praise for his response to the devastating storm that hit the U.S. East Coast just days before the November 6 election.

"I cannot thank the president enough for his personal concern and his compassion," Christie said during an October 31 tour together of the damaged areas.

Though Christie supported the Republican presidential candidate, Mitt Romney, in the 2012 race, his compliments to the Democratic incumbent were seen as a boost to Obama.

The president could probably use the help again.

Obama has spent the last two weeks trying to get past a series of controversies over his administration's handling of the attacks in Benghazi, Libya, the targeting of journalists in leak probes, and the response to revelations that the Internal Revenue Service gave extra scrutiny to conservative-leaning groups.

This will be his second tour of a storm-battered area in as many days. On Sunday, Obama traveled to Oklahoma to view the damage from a tornado.

The president has sought to portray his administration as being quick and effective at responding to natural disasters, in contrast to his predecessor, George W. Bush, whose administration was widely criticized for its handling of Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans in 2005.

The White House said Obama and Christie would view the recovery efforts from Sandy, including preparations by local businesses ahead of the important summer tourist season.

"The president ... will visit with families and business owners who have shown such resilience in the face of the destructive storm, highlight the extensive rebuilding efforts to date, and underscore his administration's ongoing commitment to stand with the impacted communities as the important work of recovery continues," the White House said.

Christie is a potential Republican candidate for president in 2016. After struggling with obesity for much of his adult life, Christie said earlier this month he underwent lap band surgery to lose weight.

Obama, a lanky exercise fanatic, cannot run for president again.

(Editing by Philip Barbara)

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Comments (9)
Harry079 wrote:
Only a desperate politician keeps campaigning 7 months after soundly winning a position he can never run for again.

Christie is the type of guy you would give your lunch money to because you were afraind of him. Obama is the type of guy you would give your lunch money to in the hope he would get rid of the guys like Christie.

In the end they both have your lunch money and your still hungry.

May 27, 2013 6:02pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
Jake987 wrote:
Isn’t that sweet…..Barack and Chris together again praying for another disaster to raise their ratings in the polls.

May 27, 2013 7:46pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
Jake987 wrote:
Actually ….Obama got another lift from Oklahoma…..maybe he wants to give Christie a chance to share in the credit!

May 27, 2013 7:48pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
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