OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Republican Govs. Chris Christie of New Jersey and Mary Fallin of Oklahoma toured the Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum on Wednesday in a visit that Fallin's Democratic challenger in the Nov. 4 general election said politicized the site of the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing.
The two GOP governors were escorted through the museum and a memorial on the grounds of the former Oklahoma City federal building in advance of a meeting of the Republican Governors Association, which Christie heads, and a fundraising event for Fallin, who is seeking re-election to a second four-year term.
Christie did not speak to the media afterward. But prior to the tour, Fallin told The Associated Press it was appropriate to tour the museum to understand the impact of the April 19, 1995, bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building — the second-deadliest act of terrorism on U.S. soil, which killed 168 people, including 19 children, and injured hundreds more.
"The Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum, I think, is a place everyone who visits should see," Fallin said. She said it tells the story of the compassion of Oklahomans and others who provided aid following the terrorist attack and the resilience of victims' family members and survivors.
"This memorial pays tribute to those who lost their lives and the first responders," she said.
Her spokesman, Alex Weintz, said Fallin's office did not schedule a news conference following the tour to avoid the appearance of politicizing it.
"We're not here to talk about politics," Weintz said.
Fallin's challenger, Democratic state Rep. Joe Dorman of Rush Springs, said he believes the GOP governors' appearance at the memorial was a political event.
"That is a reverent location for Oklahomans," Dorman said. "And to pull a political stunt like this is despicable."
Continue reading this story on the...