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Barbara Walters Calls Chris Christie A Teddy Bear & Grizzly Bear [VIDEO]

Barbara Walters describes Governor Christie as “a bear of a man– sometimes teddy bear,sometimes grizzly bear” in naming him one her 10 Most Fascinating of 2012.

Governor Christie with Barbara Walters
Governor Christie interviewed by Barbara Walters for her “10 Most Fascinating People of 2012″ special. (ABC)

In an interviewed recorded in his Statehouse office, Walters hit all the “hot button” topics with the Governor: his handling of superstorm Sandy and his working with President Obama to bring relief dollars to the state, his temper and his weight.

They also discussed his mother, a registered Democrat, who passed away in 2004. “She’s an inspiration to me,” he told Walters, describing how he flew home to be by her bedside. He told her he was going to spend the day with her, and she replied, “Go to work, Chris. It’s where you belong. There’s nothing left unsaid between us.”

Walters asked him about the criticism that by his working with the White House after Sandy his New Jersey he helped Obama win the election.  “You didn’t have to put your arm around him. You didn’t have to fly on the plane with him,” said Walters .Christie countered with “I could have lied” if he had been “cooler” to the President as Walters suggested and said he was “doing my job” in working with the President.

THE GOVERNOR’S TEMPER

Walters brought up accusations that Christie is a “hot head” as she played clips of him speaking bluntly in public and asked if he needs anger management. “No. You know, anger is not a vice,” responded Christie. “There are times when it’s appropriate for folks to react angrily, and it expresses a particular emotion and point of view that I think is very powerful.”

Walters asked Christie’s wife Mary Pat about his temper. “He’s actually a great communicator, and sometimes he has to raise his voice to do it, but there’s been a few times when I’ve cringed,” she told Walters.

TOO HEAVY TO BE PRESIDENT?

Governor Christie's Springsteen "shrine"
Governor Christie’s Springsteen “shrine” (ABC)

Walters told the governor that that some people say he is too heavy to be president one day.

The Governor calls that idea “ridiculous.” He says his performance during Superstorm Sandy showed his weight wouldn’t be a problem. He says the public saw him work 18-hour days and get “right back up the next day” and be just as effective.

THE 2016 QUESTION

As for a run for President, Christie says he isn’t sure about a run in 2016. Walters asked,”In your fantasies, when you’re just talking to yourself, do you say, “President Chris Christie?”  to which Christie replied, “No. No, I don’t.”

Walters touched on Christie’s love of Bruce Springsteen and how Sandy made them friends united in their love of New Jersey. She gave the Republican a choice: join Springsteen’s  E Street Band or a run for President in 2016. Christie laughed and said at   the moment “being in the E Street band would be kind of fun.”

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

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