Senate President Stephen Sweeney (D., Gloucester) also took the opportunity to call the governor's attacks on the Legislature childish and unproductive.
"You know how silly it is?" Sweeney asked. "Let's knock off the garbage. Let's knock off the silliness. Maybe in Iowa and Ohio and California that makes for great headlines."
The rancorous tone of the back-and-forth comments hint at a clear change in mood in Trenton in recent weeks.
In the early months of the Christie administration, the Republican governor worked with the Legislature to adopt pension and benefits changes and pass a budget, among other measures. And just weeks ago, Christie praised Sweeney at a campaign event in California, with the governor saying he was "fortunate to have a really good partner in our Senate president," according to an account in the Star-Ledger of Newark.
How sad. Remember the good old days?But lately, that collegiality has disappeared.
Misty watercolor memories...
Gosh, no one could have predicted that this guy would stab you in the back first chance he got. It's not like he's ever gone back on his word or anything...
By the way, Senator, if you're expecting public worker unions to help you pull the shiv out of your spine - well, good luck with that.
Meanwhile, I'm thinking it's time to consider naming a new Senate President...
On the same day that Schundler was testifying before the committee, Christie called a last-minute news conference to announce that he was canceling a long-planned rail tunnel to connect New Jersey and Manhattan.
Sen. Barbara Buono (D., Middlesex), who chairs the oversight committee, said it seemed "rather strategic and somewhat suspect that the timing was right in the middle of my hearing."
Still, Buono seemed to take the governor's harsh words in stride.
It would have been nice to hear this kind of talk back in July, don't you think?"The governor is very good at attacking," Buono said. "That's what he does best. He goes on the attack, and he may think that is a good governing philosophy, but I don't agree. I just sort of ignore it and continue to do my job."