Chris Christie held a town hall meeting today in South River, New Jersey. During the Q&A Christie debated a woman from the audience who was pushing for more funding for Medicaid. As part of his answer, Christie said “I’m not going to invest further money in a failed federal program.”
The questioner, who has been identified as Maura Collingsgru of New Jersey Citizen Action, began with an accusation that Christie’s administration had been silent on Medicaid spending. Christie denied this pointing out that his administration had expanded Medicaid and saying “we’re spending more dollars today, both federal and state, on Medicaid then we did at the beginning of my administration.”
The questioner continued saying “we have a budget statement we will be happy to share with you.” “I write the budget,” Christie replied adding, “Medicaid has been expanded in this state and I’m sorry you favor Obamacare and I do not.” This line got a round of applause and some cheers from the audience. Christie got a second round of applause a minute later when he said, “I’m not going to invest further money in a failed federal program.”
Despite this, the woman kept going, even claiming that Christie’s Medicaid director sided with her on the issue. Christie was dubious. “Two weeks ago I met with my Medicaid director and she had no complaint,” Christie replied adding “So I think that my access to my Medicaid director is significantly better than your opinion of it.”
During the same town hall event protesters from a public sector union heckled Christie for several minutes until they were removed. The Star-Ledger posted this video which includes a moment early on when Christie warns this is going to happen.