Presidential candidate Chris Christie said he doesn't tailor his message to any specific groups.
Christie made the statement after Politico asked about his efforts to appeal to Latino voters.
"You should go and campaign everywhere, to everyone," he said during a campaign stop in Florida.
In vote-rich South Florida, the Latino vote is critical for any candidate looking to win statewide, so support from this wide-ranging group — whether it be conservative-leaning Cuban voters or first-generation Venezuelan voters — is heavily coveted among presidential contenders.
For most of these candidates, a visit to Versailles Restaurant in Miami's Little Havana neighborhood is a rite of passage on the campaign trail, as they are able to interact with voters while also enjoying a side of Cuban cuisine at the popular establishment.
For former Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey, a 2024 Republican presidential contender, his stop at Versailles mirrored that of the other candidates, as he took questions and posed for photos with several patrons.
But while many candidates have sought to appeal to Latino voters with specific pitches on the economy and education, Christie told Politico that he wasn't customizing his political message for individual groups.
"I don't have policies tailored to particular ethnic groups," the governor told the outlet when asked about his approach in targeting Latino voters. "You should go and campaign everywhere, to everyone, and try to say the same thing no matter where you go — so they know you actually mean it."
Christie's 2016 presidential campaign faltered amid the surging candidacy of Donald Trump, but he had a record of winning over a significant number of Latino voters — many of them who leaned Democratic — when he led the Garden State.
When Christie first ran for governor in 2009, he won that race by appealing heavily to voters concerned about the state of the economy. In that election, he defeated then-Democratic Gov. Jon Corzine 48.5%-45% while capturing 32% of the Latino vote, according to CNN exit polling.
In 2013, Christie performed even better with Latino voters. While winning reelection 60%-38% over then-Democratic state Sen. Barbara Buono, the then-governor secured 51% of the Latino vote.
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