- The Washington Times - Friday, February 5, 2016

DOVER, N.H. — New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie issued a stark warning here Friday, telling New Hampshire voters that their beloved first-in-the-nation primary status will be in jeopardy if they make the wrong choices in Tuesday’s contest.

Mr. Christie has invested more time in New Hampshire than most of his rivals for the GOP presidential nomination, but he is running near the back of the pack in polls — stoking speculation that his campaign would be derailed by a poor showing here.

“I will tell you this, if you reward people who don’t spend time here, no one is going to spend any time here, and the first-in-the-nation primary could be at risk,” Mr. Christie said. ” I am telling you right now.”

Mr. Christie said the leaders in recent polls — businessman Donald Trump, Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida and Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas — have spent less time here than any of the other candidates in Republican race.

“Well, you know if you reward those folks who don’t show up here, there is no reason for new Hampshire to be first,” he said. “You think they are going to keep you first? They are going to go to a regional national primary.”

The Republican National Committee has flirted with changing the changing the nomination calendar and altering the order of the early carve-out states: Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina and Nevada.

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