New Jersey voters against Chris Christie protest his announcement for president saying the Republican governor can't be trusted to run the country. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) Protesters gathered outside the venue in Livingston, New Jersey where Chris Christie announced his run for presidency on Tuesday (June 30), saying the governor is not fit to run the state or the country. Inside a gym at his old high school, Christie announced to a supportive crowd his candidacy for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination, joining a large field of contenders seeking to win the White House next year. The announcement gave Christie, whose approval ratings and political fortunes have sagged badly in the past year, a chance to reframe his battered image and reset the plummeting expectations for his campaign. While Christie promised a campaign of "straight talk" inside, a much more critical crowd gathered outside, saying Christie can't be trusted. "How can anyone in this country or in the world trust a person whose word is blatantly false?" said Jerry Elson, a retired school psychologist from Fort Lee, New Jersey. With his image badly damaged by the "Bridgegate" lane closure scandal, his standing in national polls in the Republican race has dipped to the low single digits and his approval ratings in his home state have fallen to new lows. "He has done nothing but lie," said Annette Langer from Holmdel, New Jersey. "He's also equated drug mules to teachers. This is a man we want to run for president? He tells people to 'shut down and shut up' at meetings. This is what we want to represent us throughout the entire world? Hell no!" Christie has cultivated his in-your-face image, once telling a heckler to "sit down and shut up" and getting into frequent shouting matches with New Jersey residents who challenge him. "He's ruined New Jersey, he'll ruin the United States," said Kathy Guner from Fairlawn, New Jersey. Christie's approval ratings began to fall during the controversy over lane closings ordered by his aides in September 2013 for the approach to the George Washington Bridge connecting New Jersey and New York City, the busiest bridge in the country. Some critics said they were political retribution against a Democratic New Jersey mayor who refused to endorse Christie's re-election campaign. Christie has disavowed knowledge of the closures. A former ally of the governor pleaded guilty to federal charges in the scandal in May, and two others were indicted.