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United in crisis, Obama and Christie tour a battered N.J. by copter

October 31, 2012|By Michael Muskal and Molly Hennessey-Fiske

SEA BRIGHT, N.J. -- President Obama and Gov. Chris Christie, opponents in electoral politics but united in dealing with the devastating aftermath of super storm Sandy, toured parts of southern New Jersey on Wednesday, seeing flooded streets, flattened houses and busted piers.

Obama’s visit came as New Jersey remained in emergency mode fighting for recovery on two fronts. In the north, National Guard troops brought supplies to Hoboken where as many as 20,000 people remained stranded  because of flood waters. In the south, the storm has severely damaged the beaches and barrier islands, the heart of the state’s critical tourism industry.

Christie greeted Obama when the president arrived in Atlantic City on Air Force One and the pair went off on a helicopter tour followed by a visit to the Brigantine Beach Community Center, which is serving as a shelter. For Obama, the tour offered a chance demonstrate both compassion and his role as a leader who gets things done, a stand he has taken in visits to areas hit in the past by disasters such as tornadoes.

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