Sen. Marco Rubio is reminding reporters that Chris Christie once donated to Planned Parenthood, calling into question the New Jersey Governor’s conservative credentials.
Rubio’s remarks are the latest blow in the ongoing battle between the two candidates, fighting for establishment leadership in New Hampshire ahead of its early primary.
After a Super PAC supporting Rubio aired ads criticizing Christie’s record in New Jersey, Christie asserted that the Florida Senator wouldn’t be able to “slime his way to the White House” and questioned Rubio’s record on amnesty for illegal immigrants.
But Rubio continues to bring up Christie’s record as a Republican in a blue state on the campaign trail.
“When it comes to Chris Christie, he got into politics as a supporter of gun control, that’s why he ran.” Rubio said in New Hampshire today, in comments that were aired on Fox News. “He made a personal contribution to Planned Parenthood. He has attacked Republicans that oppose Common Core. That’s not what we need in our next president.”
Later, Rubio made the same argument in an interview with Neil Cavuto on Fox News, arguing that the issue wasn’t personal.
“This is an issue-based disagreement, it’s not personal,” he said. “But it’s significant, it’s important in this election. We can’t get this election wrong.”
In response to a query from Breitbart News, Christie’s team defended the governor’s record on pro-life issues, pointing to an interview where he explained why he changed from pro-choice to pro-life in the 1990s.
In 2011, Christie explained to CNN’s Piers Morgan that he was a “kind of a non-thinking pro-choice person” in the 90’s before hearing the heartbeat of his daughter Sarah in the womb.
“As I was driving back to work I said to myself you know, under my position on abortion I would say that a week ago that wasn’t a life, I heard that heartbeat, that’s a life,” he explained. “It led to me having a real reflection on my position and when I took time to reflect on it I just said you know what? I’m not comfortable with that anymore, that was back in 1995, and I’ve been pro-life ever since.”
Christie’s Communications Director Samantha Smith responded to Rubio’s attack in a statement to Breitbart News:
“This is the difference between a senator and an executive,” she said. “While Senator Rubio has no doubt given some nice speeches on these issues, Governor Christie has vetoed Planned Parenthood funding, ended Common Core in New Jersey, and protected the rights of gun owners.”