Republican presidential hopeful Chris Christie nabbed an endorsement from the New Hampshire Union Leader. In a 28 November editorial entitled "For our safety, our future: Chris Christie for President," newspaper publisher Joseph W McQuaid praised the New Jersey governor for being "the one candidate who has the range and type of experience the nation desperately needs." Despite the endorsement, Christie continues to poll at 2% among his fellow GOP candidates.
"Chris Christie is a solid, pro-life conservative who has managed to govern in liberal New Jersey, face down the big public unions, and win a second term," McQuaid wrote. "Christie can work across the aisle, but he won't get rolled by the bureaucrats. We don't need as President some well-meaning person from the private sector who has no public experience."
He continued to praise the low-polling governor for his past work as attorney general. "But the one reason he may be best-suited to lead during these times is because he tells it like it is and isn't shy about it," McQuaid added.
Although the Union Leader's endorsement was much-awaited, The Wall Street Journal noted that it has not always meant a ticket to the Republican nomination or even a win in New Hampshire. In 2012, the newspaper endorsed Newt Gingrich, who would go on to finish fourth in the state's primary with 9.4% of the vote.
The endorsement comes at a critical time for Christie's campaign. Just 10 weeks before the New Hampshire primaries, Christie is again getting attention following the deadly terrorists' attacks in Paris. The events in France have placed national security issues, as well as immigration, at the forefront of the 2016 elections. Christie's past work pursuing terror cases as US Attorney for New Jersey has come under the spotlight, CNN noted.
The Union Leader publisher also made sure to take a hit at Christie's competitors in his endorsement. "Other candidates have gained public and media attention by speaking bluntly," McQuaid said. "But it's important when you are telling it like it is to actually know what you are talking about. Gov Christie knows what he is saying because he has experienced it. And unlike some others, he believes in what he says because he has a strong set of conservative values."
Christie took to Twitter to thank the newspaper for its endorsement, adding that he was "honoured" to receive its support. "Mon will be my 49th day in NH. I'll keep working hard to earn the trust of the voters. Thx 4 the confidence @UnionLeader," the candidate wrote. In the last New Hampshire Republican presidential primary poll by the Boston Globe and Suffolk University on 22 November, Christie trailed in seventh place with only 4% of the vote.