News Column

Obama Tells New Jersey It Is Stronger Than Sandy

May 28, 2013

President Barack Obama teamed up with New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie Tuesday to review recovery efforts along the storm-devastated Jersey Shore.

Superstorm Sandy struck New Jersey in October, killing 37 people, destroying thousands of homes, leaving more than 2.6 million customers without electricity and causing an estimated $30 billion in damage.

Speaking to a crowd at Asbury Park Convention Hall in Asbury Park, N.J., Obama said: "You are stronger than the storm. ... The Jersey Shore is back."

Obama said his advisers asked him last week whether he wanted to spend Tuesday in Washington or on the Jersey Shore.

"I want to say I've made some tough decisions but this wasn't one of them," Obama said.

The president said the federal government will keep providing help in the recovery.

He joked that he had lost at a football toss to Christie, and said the governor's children had taught him the right technique at an arcade game. He also praised officials from the Federal Emergency Management Agency for their work in the recovery.

In introducing the president, Christie said there was much to be done, but much had been done already in the recovery.

"Everyone is ready to welcome America back to the Jersey Shore and so am I," Christie said, citing Obama's help. "We've made great progress, but we have so much more to do."

The White House said Obama planned to meet with families and business owners along the shore and review the rebuilding and recovery efforts.

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Source: Copyright UPI 2013