The Washington Times - September 28, 2011, 01:42PM

The White House hit back Wednesday against New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s contention that President Obama has been a “bystander” to the nation’s problems.

“There were no bystanders in the Oval Office,” presidential press secretary Jay Carney said. “In the past two and a half years that Barack Obama has been president, it has been one of the most substantial periods in our history.”

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Mr. Carney went on to cite the “enormity” of the challenges that faced Mr. Obama when he took office, including a deep recession and global financial crisis. He said Mr. Obama made “a series of incredibly challenging decisions” to solve those problems.

Mr. Christie, in a speech Tuesday night at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in California, said Americans “continue to wait and hope that our president will finally stop being a bystander in the Oval Office.”

“We hope that he will shake off the paralysis that has made it impossible for him to take on the really big things that are obvious to all Americans,” Mr. Christie said.

Some Republicans are hoping that Mr. Christie will run for president in 2012, but he has repeatedly denied interest and did so again Tuesday night.