Christie starts selling tax cut plan to the people

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie pauses as he addresses a gathering in Voorhees, N.J., during a town hall meeting Wednesday, Jan. 18, 2012. (AP Photo/Mel Evans)

January 18, 2012 3:54:11 PM PST
A crowd of a few hundred filled the atrium inside the Voorhees Town Center this afternoon. They came from across South Jersey, some just for a chance to see the straight-talking governor with an increasingly high profile on a national stage.

"I really wanted to see the governor up close. I think he is one of the most honest politicians in a very long time," Sandra Ogilvie of Pemberton, NJ said.

"I think it's fantastic. This is my eighth town hall," Jennifer Cavallaro of Woolwich, NJ said.

Chris Christie, of course, took questions, many about his proposals for education reform.

"There is no silver bullet to fix education in the state," Christie said.

The governor talked about creating jobs, reducing government and he touted proposals he laid out in his State of the State address yesterday. That includes an across the board, 10 percent income tax cut that he believes will entice people to move to New Jersey.

"We are not going to do it all at once, but phase it in over three years. I don't want to go back to old habits of the past where we overpromise and then under deliver," Christie said.

Some put the cost of his tax cut proposal at a billion dollars and Democrats blast it as a boon for the wealthy and detrimental to school funding, but the tax cut plan got big applause from this South Jersey crowd this afternoon.

"I don't know how he's going to do it, but if he can do it, more power to him," Larry Spellman of Medford, NJ said.

Political watchers believe Christie is solidifying his conservative agenda: lowering taxes and reducing government as he looks ahead to 2013 and perhaps a run at a national office in the future.