President Barack Obama joined Republican New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie on Tuesday to assess the beachfront towns on the shores of New Jersey that Hurricane Sandy decimated last October.
Obama talked about how much progress has been made on the storm-ravaged coast, but addressed the fact that there is still a lot of work left to do, particularly on hard-hit barrier islands.
“That’s part of the reason I came back, to let people know we’re going to keep on going until we finish,” Obama told residents and reporters.
Throughout the press, political pundits quipped about the unlikely friendship between the Democratic president and Christie, with the New York Times referring to their camaraderie as a “bromance.” CNBC titled an article discussing the visit: “Sequel to Sandy: The Obama-Christie Show, Part 2.” An ABC News story speculated that the praise Christie gave the president’s initial response to Sandy helped his re-election bid the following month.
As he introduced the president at Tuesday's speech, Christie said that concern for the people of New Jersey and the desire to restore the shore trumped any political party, according to an ABC News story that called the pair “the political odd couple.”
"Everybody came together, Republicans, Democrats, independents,” Christie said, according to the ABC story. “We all came together because New Jersey is more important and our citizens' lives are more important than any kind of politics at all.”
Still, Brian Donohue, a reporter and videographer for The Star-Ledger, told WBUR that the shore is really “half open.”
Some parts are almost entirely dependent on revenue generated by tourism during the summer season and property taxes. A study from the Rutgers School of Public Policy and Planning estimates that the state will lose $950 million in revenue for the summer season.