New Jersey's Gov. Christie got beaned by his critics Wednesday for taking a $12.5 million State Police chopper to his son's high school baseball game.
The Republican darling stayed only through the fifth inning Tuesday before helicoptering back to the governor's mansion in Princeton to meet with an Iowa businessmen who tried to get him to run for president.
"The people of the state of New Jersey should not be required to pick up the tab so he can meet with Iowa donors at Drumthwacket," Assemblyman John Wisniewski (D-Middlesex) told the Newark Star-Ledger.
Assemblyman Paul Moriarty, (D-Turnersville), said Christie should pay taxpayers back for his private use of the state's chopper.
"Taxpayers cannot afford his helicopter joyrides," he said.
Christie's spokesman defended his use of the helicopter, but he wouldn't say where the governor was flying from.
"It is a means of transportation that is occasionally used as the schedule demands," Michael Drewniak wrote in an email to the newspaper. "This has historically been the case in prior administrations as well, and we continue to be judicious in limiting its use."
Drewniak also did not detail how much Christie's chopper cost hard-pressed Jersey residents, but it costs about $1,200-an-hour to operate the Agusta Westland helicopter, which can reach nearly 200 miles per hour and was added to the state fleet last month.
The tough-talking Jersey governor is being courted by Republicans unhappy with the current crop of GOP candidates. He has so far rebuffed them.
Christie landed near the St. Joseph Regional High School baseball field in Montvale, N.J., shortly before the game started, the Star-Ledger reported.
Instead of walking the 100 yards to the field, the burly governor and first lady Mary Pat Christie hopped into a black car with tinted windows and rode the rest of the way.
Their oldest son, Andrew, plays catcher for the posh private Delbarton School, which beat St. Joseph by a score of 7-2.
I love it - not only did Christie get flown to the game in a helicopter, but rather than walk 100 yards from the landing site to the field, he got driven in a car.
Then he flew back to meet with Republican Party donors.
All on the taxpayer's dime.
I guess austerity is not for the New Jersey governor, only the people he governs.