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New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and New Hampshire Republican gubernatorial candidate Walt Havenstein. (NH1 file photo)

Oct 6, 2014 10:25 AM

First on NH1: NJ Gov. Chris Christie coming back to NH for Walt Havenstein

NH1 Political Director - NH1.com

CONCORD - Chris Christie is coming back to New Hampshire on Friday.

The Republican governor of New Jersey will team up with Granite State GOP nominee Walt Havenstein at campaign stops in Berlin and Lancaster, a Republican source with knowledge of the events told NH1.

This is the fourth trip to the Granite State since June for the Republican governor of New Jersey, who's seriously considering a 2016 run for the White House. And it's the first time this year that Christie's visiting New Hampshire's North Country.

Christie and Havenstein are scheduled to make a campaign stop at Northland Restaurant & Dairy Bar in Berlin, followed by a North Country meet and greet at the VFW Hall in Lancaster.

At the meet and greet, Havenstein is expected to bring up his opposition to the Northern Pass project, a 187-mile transmission line proposal through northern New Hampshire that would send Canadian hydropower to New England. Havenstein has said the $1.4 billion project is not economically viable. Democratic Gov. Maggie Hassan is also opposed to the Northern Pass project as it's currently proposed.

With one month to go until Election Day, the first term Democratic governor remains in the lead in the public opinion polls over Havenstein, an engineer who served 28 years in the Marines before running Nashua based BAE Systems.

An NH1 poll by New England College that was released last week indicated Hassan with a four point advantage over Havenstein. Other recent surveys had Hassan up by double digits.

Christie, the chairman of the Republican Governors Association, has been a strong supporter of Havenstein and personally endorsed him before the September primary.

But while this trip is about the 2014 election, talk of 2016 hovers over the visit. For Christie, the return visit to the first-in-the-nation primary state will generate more buzz that he's seriously considering a race for the White House.

A CNN poll conducted last month had Christie at 9% among New Hampshire Republicans when it came to their choice for their party's 2016 nominee. Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky was at 15%, followed by former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and Rep. Paul Ryan (the 2012 GOP vice presidential nominee) each at 10%. Christie was tied with former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, a 2008 Republican presidential candidate). Everyone else tested in the survey was at 7% or less.

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