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Feb 7, 2016 11:33 PM

Steinhauser: Chris Christie says GOP debate 'changes the entire race'

NH1 News Political Director

Steinhauser: Chris Christie says GOP debate ‘changes the entire race’

EXETER – Chris Christie predicts there are now “more tickets” out of New Hampshire than there were before Saturday night’s Republican presidential debate.

And as for his debate performance, which scored big with most pundits, the New Jersey governor and GOP White House candidate modestly told NH1 News “I think it went OK.”

Christie took questions from NH1 News and other organizations following a stop Sunday afternoon at Shooters Pub. It was Christie’s second trip to the watering hole this election cycle. He held one of his first Granite State town halls at Shooters back in April.

During the debate, Christie repeatedly challenged Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, and most pundits and analysts raved about Christie and gave Rubio poor marks.

Sunday Christie told reporters “going into last night there was a march among the chattering class and the political operatives in this country to anoint Sen. Rubio. And I think that anointment is now over. And so I think it changes the entire race and it means there are probably more tickets out of this state than there were before last night, because I don’t think anybody’s ready to settle at this point, after what went on last night.”

Asked by NH1 News if his blasts at Rubio were pre-meditated, Christie said “the plan was to go and talk about the thing that I’ve been talking about all week that there’s a big difference between me and Marco Rubio – between my experience and his – who’s ready to take on Hillary Clinton – who’s ready to run this country. And so this isn’t about me or Marco Rubio. This is about the country. The country needs a president who’s ready. We’ve had seven years of a president who wasn’t ready for the job. I’m ready for the job. Sen. Rubio is not. And that’s the point I was trying to make last night and I think it went OK.”

Christie’s spent more time in New Hampshire this cycle than any other presidential candidate from either party. As he was leaving Shooters, Christie was joking asked by NH1 News if he’d retire in the Granite State.

“I’m not thinking about retiring yet, but it’s a very nice place I think Marty Pat likes lake Winnipesaukee very much. Maybe we can move in with the Romneys we’ll see,” Christie joked.

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