Latino Voters: Christie Flip-flopping on Tuition for Illegal Immigrants

Image: Latino Voters: Christie Flip-flopping on Tuition for Illegal Immigrants Gov. Chris Christie answers questions from students and reporters at Jose Marti Freshman Academy in Union City on Nov. 6.

Thursday, 28 Nov 2013 08:42 AM

By Courtney Coren

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Republican Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey is flip-flopping on in-state tuition for illegal immigrants, after saying it was something he supported during his gubernatorial campaign in an effort to garner the Latino vote, immigrant advocates claim.

The New Jersey Republican said during a debate with his Democratic opponent Barbara Buono that he would support a reduced tuition for those in the United States illegally. But on Monday he said that, while he still supported lower in-state tuition for illegal immigrants, he could not sign the bill just passed by the State Senate that would make it legal, The New York Times reported.

"When he was running for election he was running to be able to say, 'Look, I am the only Republican who can win the Latino vote," said Giancarlo Tello of the New Jersey Tuition Equity for Dreamers Coalition. "Now that he already got the election, he's already flip-flopping."

Christie said that the reason he cannot sign the bill is because it allows out-of-state residents to pay in-state costs for New Jersey boarding schools and also qualifies them for in-state college tuition, turning the Garden State into a "magnet state" for illegal immigrants.

"They're overreaching and they're making it unsignable," he said.

While immigrant advocates were puzzled by his comments, the New Jersey governor's spokesman said Wednesday that Christie still "supports New Jerseyans receiving in-state tuition, no matter how they came to this country."

Christie won re-election in a landslide Nov. 5 and is seen as one of the top potential presidential candidates for 2016.

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