Gov. Chris Christie said he wouldn't have attended Monday’s funeral for a State Police trooper even if he had been in New Jersey rather than on the campaign trail with Donald Trump.

Christie, at a Linden event Tuesday afternoon, said he and Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno had decided last week that she would attend Sean Cullen’s funeral. The governor said if he was in New Jersey, he would have been at a groundbreaking event in Essex County.

Instead, Trump called him Sunday to ask if he would join him at his Monday campaign events.

“I’ve been doing this for six and a half years. The balance is, you try to determine where you’re needed to be and balance that both with your political obligations and your public obligations and your personal obligations. All of which you try to balance,” Christie said.

Everyone’s entitled to their opinion, but they’re not entitled to their own set of facts, and what happened yesterday is what we’ve been doing consistently over the course of the last six and a half years.

“Everyone will have different opinions about that. That’s OK,” Christie said. “Everyone’s entitled to their opinion, but they’re not entitled to their own set of facts, and what happened yesterday is what we’ve been doing consistently over the course of the last six and a half years.”

Christie and Guadagno have each attended troopers’ funerals in past instances.

However, Christie’s political appearance with Trump at the same time as the funeral sparked another round of criticism about his priorities and a scathing front-page headline in the New York Daily News.

Christie said similar critiques didn’t come up after Guadagno represented the state at past funerals.

“She’s the second-ranking state official,” Christie said. “Doing that, having her there, shows the respect of the executive branch and the respect of the state government for the police officer or the trooper who has fallen either in or out of the line of duty. This has much more to do with politics than it has to do with anything else.”

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