Chris Christie says he was away from New Jersey during blizzard because he promised his children a trip to Disney World

Laura Donovan Contributor

Family comes first to N.J. Governor Chris Christie, at least during the holidays. Both Christie and Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno were out of state during “Snowpocalypse 2010,” the winter storm that blasted the East Coast in the days after Christmas.

In an interview Friday, Christie explained that he went to Florida during the blizzard because of a commitment he’d made to his children.

“I had made a promise to my children that at the end of my first year as governor, that I was going to take them to Disney World the week between Christmas and New Year’s,” Christie said. “My first and most important responsibility in my view is as a husband and a father, and I think I made that pretty clear to the people of New Jersey when I was running … I was not going to rescind my child’s Christmas wish.”

Christie added that he felt secure following through with his Christmas promise because he was “convinced” that the state of New Jersey had a plan in place for the snowstorm.

“This is not like in the 1800s, when you know, no one would be able to get me,” Christie said. “Believe me, my cell phone was ringing where I was much more than I would have preferred it to under normal circumstances when I’m away on a family vacation. … I was not going to look at my children and say, ‘No, we’re not going.'”

As for Guadagno, Christie granted her a two-week vacation so she could spend time with her “gravely ill” father.

“I don’t think there’s been another time in the year that I’ve been governor when both the lieutenant governor and I were out of state at the same time … but here’s what happened,” Christie said.  “This summer, the lieutenant governor came to me  and told me her father, who is gravely ill, had planned a vacation, uh what we hope won’t be but fear may be a last vacation for him to take all his children and all his grandchildren on a cruise for two weeks. This was one of his final wishes … There’s no way I would look at my lieutenant governor and say to her, ‘No, you know, you can only have a week.'”

A video of Gov. Christie’s explanation can be found here.

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