Governor Christie Would Have to Resign Under Democratic Proposal

Democratic lawmakers say they will introduce a bill this week requiring Gov. Chris Christie and future governors to resign from office if they seek the presidency.

Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg and Sen. Raymond Lesniak said Wednesday they will introduce the measure during Thursday's session.

The senators do not dispute the bill is unlikely to be signed by the Republican governor but they say it's worth pursuing because Christie is spending too much time out of the state.

"We pass a lot of bills that he might not sign but they create a discussion," Weinberg said. "They create a public awareness."

Added Lesniak: "Just because he's likely to veto it doesn't mean we shouldn't try."

Christie announced his candidacy for the GOP presidential nomination last month in Livingston but has spent much time outside the state campaigning.

He has said he uses technology to keep tabs on state affairs while beyond its borders. His office called the legislation "nonsense."

"It's impossible to respond to every bit of silly nonsense that comes from this legislature, and the governor has been clear that he is never disconnected from doing his job as governor," said Brian Murray, spokesman for the governor's office.

The bill calls on the governor to resign within 10 days of filing paperwork to run for the White House with the Federal Election Commission.

It's not the only measure Democrats are taking up to highlight Christie's political ambitions.

Also on Thursday, the state Senate will debate in committee a bill that would prevent state funds from being used for political trips outside New Jersey. The bill, Weinberg said, takes aim at the security costs incurred by the public for Christie's travel outside New Jersey as he pursues the GOP nomination.

Murray called the measure "another scene in the endless political drama" in the Legislature.

"There is no point to joining their daily theatrics," he said.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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