Trust in Trump and the trouble with taxes (Ask The Governor Highlights)
It had only been days since President Donald Trump took office when Gov. Chris Christie — the first former rival of Trump's to endorse him during last year's GOP primary — joined Eric Scott for New Jersey 101.5's "Ask the Governor" Wednesday.
And already, Trump has taken action to scale back the Affordable Care Act — a key campaign promise. But Christie told Scott Wednesday he's not worried that'll endanger the governor's own priority for his last year in office — battling New Jersey's growing opioid addiction problem. Instead, Christie said, he's confident changes to federal policy will give governors the tools they need to set priorities locally.
Also Wednesday, Christie said he agrees with Trump on moves to scale back funding to so-called "sanctuary cities" — those that have pledged not to work with the federal government on immigration enforcement or take such enforcement on themselves. And Christie said it'll be up to those local leader to explain to their constituents where the funding they depend upon has gone.
New Jersey property taxes were up nearly $700 million in 2016, as New Jersey 101.5's Michael Symons reported this week (see here to find out how much the average tax bill in your own town went up). And while Christie blamed the state Legislature for blocking some initiatives he said could have saved taxpayers money, he heralded legislative accomplishments such as a 2 percent (with some exceptions allowed) cap on year-to-year property tax growth. The governor also said he hasn't given up hope on more progress in the coming year.
When Christie leaves office, the state's first lieutenant governor, Kim Guadagno, hopes to replace him. But while Christie spoke with affection for his second in command, he wouldn't say whether she's up for a campaign — describing the process as a grueling one, and arguing there's no way to know if any candidate can withstand it until he or she tries. The governor also declined to endorse his lieutenant, saying it's better to see how the contested GOP primary progresses.
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