The chairman of Chris Christie’s campaign stood up for his fellow Republican today, taking a swipe at two top Democrats who called Christie fat.
State Sen. Joe Kyrillos (R-Middletown) took issue with comments about Christie’s girth from state Sen. Raymond Lesniak (D-Elizabeth) and Democratic State hairman/Assemblyman Joseph Cryan (D-Union).
Lesniak told New York Magazine that Christie “looks hideous! And unhealthy… That doesn’t portray the discipline that’s necessary to lead this state.”
Cryan last night asked a crowd of Essex County Democrats “What would it feel like if the next governor weighs 350 pounds?”
Kyrillos today said the comments “shameful,” and blamed Gov. Jon Corzine’s campaign, which created the now famous ad that says Christie “threw his weight around” to get out of a traffic ticket, for setting the tone.
“Apparently, the Governor’s millions of dollars in negative attack ads have not been enough to hide his dismal record of record unemployment, hundreds of thousands of lost jobs and his promises to raise taxes even higher,” he said. “The Corzine campaign is now resorting to pitiful, nasty and disgraceful personal attacks. Governor Corzine should apologize for a campaign that is beneath the office he holds and an embarrassment to the state.”
Lesniak, who is personally close to Kyrillos, responded that “Kyrillos himself is nasty and disgraceful in making that comment, and it shows the desperation of a failing campaign that he’s managing on behalf of Chris Christie.”
Lesniak said that Kyrillos called him this afternoon to give him a heads up that he was putting out the statement.
“My comment was ‘Gee, Joe, I missed the comment you put out praising me when I came out supporting Chris Christie’s drug court program in Tom Moran’s column in the Star-Ledger this week.”
Lesniak said he just made an observation that “in poll after poll after poll – politics or business – people get… demoted and not hired if they are grossly overweight and look like they don’t have the personal discipline to keep their weight under control, that will hurt them with the electorate.”
Cryan could not immediately be reached for comment.