The Washington Times - November 11, 2013, 03:00PM

There are at least a few Republicans who aren’t quite ready to throw in with New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie as a savior of the party — including Sen. James Inhofe of Oklahoma, who says he blames Mr. Christie for President Obama’s re-election last year.

“I’d have a hard time supporting Chris Christie,” Mr. Inhofe told The Oklahoman. “Christie I still hold responsible for … the re-election of Obama.”


Mr. Christie was criticized in some Republican circles for publicly embracing Mr. Obama following the devastation Hurricane Sandy brought upon New Jersey and the Northeast last year right before the president defeated Republican Mitt Romney in the November election.

Sen. Rand Paul, Kentucky Republican, who has called Mr. Christie the “king of bacon,” recently criticized the governor’s touting of his Sandy relief efforts at a recent hearing on the federal government’s efforts in the wake of the storm.

“Some of these ads, people running for office put their mug all over these ads while they’re in the middle of a political campaign,” Mr. Paul said, referring to an ad campaign from the state intended to being tourists back in that featured Mr. Christie. “In New Jersey, $25 million was spent on ads that included somebody running for political office. Do [you] think there might be a conflict of interest there?”

Mr. Inhofe said he might be inclined to support either Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas or Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida for the Republican presidential nomination in 2016, should either of them choose to run.

“I like them both but probably Rubio because of the length of time he’s been in this thing and the experience he’s had in Florida,” Mr. Inhofe told the paper. “I agree that we might need to find a viable candidate outside this town. But they’re kind of considered to be outside this town.”