Republican Party Convention Speaker Chris Christie

Monday, 27 Aug 2012 09:24 AM


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New Jersey Governor Chris Christie will deliver the keynote address at the Republican National Convention in Tampa on Tuesday.

Here are a few facts about Christie.

* Known as brutally frank, Christie is a colorful speaker who is popular among fiscal conservatives and had been urged by many fellow Republicans to run for president himself, and then was rumored as a possible vice presidential pick. Christie stayed out and endorsed Romney.

* New Jersey voters approved of Christie's job performance by a margin of 54 percent to 39 percent in a Quinnipiac University poll in July. But asked to name a single word to describe the former federal prosecutor, "bully" was the most common choice, followed by "arrogant" and "tough."

* At an estimated 300 pounds (136 kg), Christie, 49, is overweight. In 2011, he was hospitalized after an asthma attack so bad that he had trouble breathing. Leaving the hospital, he said, "If I weighed less I'd be healthier. I've been taking it seriously. It's one of the major struggles of my life. I'm working on it."

* Christie became New Jersey governor in November 2009, riding an anti-incumbency wave against Democrat Jon Corzine. Although he appeals to law-and-order conservatives, his positions on social issues are moderate enough to help him win support in a Democratic-leaning state.

* Christie dubbed the state's economic rebirth "The Jersey Comeback," but the phrase has begun to ring hollow after New Jersey recently reported the fourth-highest state unemployment rate at 9.8 percent.

© 2014 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

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