WASHINGTON (AP) — Gov. Chris Christie used his keynote speech before the state Chamber of Commerce on Thursday night to thank President Obama for coming to New Jersey's aid so quickly after Superstorm Sandy while renewing his call for cooperation rather than rancor among the two major parties.
The governor also used the event to remind the audience of several hundred that 42,000 state residents are still homeless from the Oct. 29 storm.
"Life is not normal for them and it won't be for a very long time," Christie said.
Christie said Obama's response was "extraordinary."
The governor recounted having a half-hour conversation alone with the president three days before a $60 billion aid bill was sent to Congress.
"What I can assure you is the same thing I assured the president that day in the Oval Office," Christie said, "if he places his trust in New Jersey, New Jersey would not let him down. I want to thank the president. He's been extraordinary."
Christie also praised New Jersey's two Democratic U.S. Senators, Bob Menendez and Frank Lautenberg, for helping to secure the Sandy aid. Christie has tangled with both on other issues.