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Chris Christie's Republican Convention Address

10:39 PM, Aug 28, 2012 • By DANIEL HALPER
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We are the great grandchildren of men and women who broke their backs in the name of American ingenuity; the grandchildren of the Greatest Generation; the sons and daughters of immigrants; the brothers and sisters of everyday heroes; the neighbors of entrepreneurs and firefighters, teachers and farmers, veterans and factory workers and everyone in-between who shows up not just on the big days or the good days, but on the bad days and on the hard days.

 

Each and every day. All 365 of them.

 

We are the United States of America.

 

Now we must lead the way our citizens live. To lead as my mother insisted I live, not by avoiding truths, especially the hard ones, but by facing up to them and being the better for it.

 

We cannot afford to do anything less.

 

I know because this was the challenge in New Jersey. 

 

When I came into office, I could continue on the same path that led to wealth, jobs and people leaving the state or I could do the job the people elected me to do - to do the big things. 

 

There were those who said it couldn't be done.  The problems were too big, too politically charged, too broken to fix. But we were on a path we could no longer afford to follow. 

 

They said it was impossible to cut taxes in a state where taxes were raised 115 times in eight years. That it was impossible to balance a budget at the same time, with an $11 billion deficit. 

 

Three years later, we have three balanced budgets with lower taxes. 

 

We did it. 

 

They said it was impossible to touch the third rail of politics. To take on the public sector unions and to reform a pension and health benefit system that was headed to bankruptcy. 

 

With bipartisan leadership we saved taxpayers $132 billion over 30 years and saved retirees their pension.

 

We did it. 

 

They said it was impossible to speak the truth to the teachers union. They were just too powerful.  

 

Real teacher tenure reform that demands accountability and ends the guarantee of a job for life regardless of performance would never happen.

 

For the first time in 100 years with bipartisan support, we did it. 

 

The disciples of yesterday's politics underestimated the will of the people. They assumed our people were selfish; that when told of the difficult problems, tough choices and complicated solutions, they would simply turn their backs, that they would decide it was every man for himself.

 

Instead, the people of New Jersey stepped up and shared in the sacrifice. 

 

They rewarded politicians who led instead of politicians who pandered.

 

We shouldn't be surprised. 

 

We've never been a country to shy away from the truth.  History shows that we stand up when it counts and it's this quality that has defined our character and our significance in the world.

 

I know this simple truth and I'm not afraid to say it: our ideas are right for America and their ideas have failed America. 

 

Let's be clear with the American people tonight. Here's what we believe as Republicans and what they believe as Democrats. 

 

We believe in telling hard working families the truth about our country's fiscal realities.  Telling them what they already know - the math of federal spending doesn't add up.

 

With $5 trillion in debt added over the last four years, we have no other option but to make the hard choices, cut federal spending and fundamentally reduce the size of government. 

 

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