Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey won re-election by a crushing margin on Tuesday, a victory that vaulted him to the front ranks of Republican presidential contenders and made him his party’s foremost proponent of pragmatism over ideology.
Mr. Christie declared that his decisive win should be a lesson for the nation’s broken political system and his feuding party: In a state where Democrats outnumber Republicans by over 700,000, Mr. Christie won a majority of the votes of women and Hispanics and made impressive inroads among younger voters and blacks — groups that Republicans nationally have struggled to attract.
The governor prevailed despite holding positions contrary to those of many New Jersey voters on several key issues, including same-sex marriage, abortion rights and the minimum wage, and despite an economic recovery that has trailed the rest of the country.
He attracted a broad coalition by campaigning as a straight-talking, even swaggering, leader who could reach across the aisle to solve problems.
“I know that if we can do this in Trenton, N.J., then maybe the folks in Washington, D.C., should tune in their TVs right now and see how it’s done,” Mr. Christie told a packed crowd at Convention Hall in Asbury Park, where his musical idol, Bruce Springsteen, holds holiday concerts, and where red and blue lighting gave the gathering a presidential campaign-like glow.
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