New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) poked fun at his weight in an interview with CBS’s David Letterman on Monday, and said that if jokes about him are funny, he laughs.
Christie kicked off the interview by pulling out a donut and taking a bite. “I didn’t know this was going to be this long,” he joked in his first appearance on “The Late Show.”
The outspoken Republican, who read Letterman a pair of jokes the late-night host had made about his weight in the past, said, “from my perspective, if the joke is funny, I laugh, even if it’s about me.”
Christie said his blood sugar and cholesterol levels are normal, and that he is in good health. “I’m basically the healthiest fat guy you’ve ever seen in your life,” he said. The governor noted that he regularly receives encouragement from his family to diet.
Christie faces reelection in November, and polls show he is well-positioned to win a second term. He is also frequently mentioned as a potential 2016 presidential candidate. The governor wouldn’t tip his hand when Letterman asked him about the presidential race.
“I’m going to win in 2013, that’s my goal,” Christie said, adding, “I think everybody understands that if you see something you think you can do, and you can do it well, that people give you a fair opportunity to do it. I’m nowhere near making that decision yet, at all.”
New Jersey’s recovery in the aftermath of superstorm Sandy also came up during the interview. Christie said that 42,000 families remain homeless in the wake of the storm. “It’s still awful,” he said.
Washington lawmakers recently approved a federal aid package to help the recovery process, and Christie said that the money will be used to set up programs for business grants and homeowners, among other things.
Christie attracted widespread attention when he publicly lambasted House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) for not calling for a vote on the aid package sooner. He said the speaker took responsibility for the decision in a conversation with him.
Christie added that he didn’t pull any punches in his private conversations with Boehner, saying he was “less gentle privately than he was publicly.”
The conversation also turned to football. The governor attended Super Bowl XLVII on Sunday with NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. He said Goodell was unfazed by the 34-minute power outage that delayed the game in the third quarter. “He didn’t seem to care one bit,” said Christie.