Christie says family can't veto 2016 decision

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Story highlights

  • New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie says he hasn't yet decided whether to run for president
  • If he does decide to run, though, his family won't be able to veto it
  • The rest of the field, Christie said, will have no bearing on his decision

(CNN)New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie again insisted he hasn't yet decided whether to run for president, but his family won't be able to veto him if he does decide to jump in the race.

He added, however, what his family thinks about the prospect "matters deeply to me."
"And just as importantly, what the potential impact would be on each and every one of them is something that weighs enormously on me, " he said during his monthly "Ask the Governor" radio show.
    The New Jersey governor said that "just this morning as I was getting ready for work" he was thinking about how his youngest daughter, 11-year-old Bridget, would be affected by a run.
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    Christie said he's asking himself three questions: "Is it right for me, is it right for my family, is it right for the country — in that order."
    "I'll decide," on the answer to those questions, he said, "and then after that I'll make the decision about when to let everyone know."
    Christie has repeatedly said he hasn't made up his mind on 2016, but has made no secret of his interest and his supporters are moving to build the operation he'll need if he does decide to jump in the race.
    Allies of the governor are in the early stages of starting a leadership political action committee that would serve as an apparatus for him to travel and to hire staff, CNN confirmed earlier this month.
    During his Thursday evening radio show appearance, Christie wouldn't confirm that those plans were underway.
    "There's lots of people making lots of suggestions to me ... There's a whole bunch of different options on the table, but I haven't made any final decision about what to do," he said.
    With former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush announcing last month plans to "actively explore" a run, and 2012 GOP nominee Mitt Romney telling donors and supporters he's seriously considering it, Christie's path to the nomination looks to have narrowed, as both Bush and Romney would vie for the same universe of establishment-minded donors and voters as Christie.
    But Christie made clear that the rest of the field will have no bearing on his eventual decision.
    "'I'm not gonna allow other people to dictate to me my time frame," he said.
    Christie has said before that running against Bush would be "stressful" because "you don't like to run against people who are your friends."
    The New Jersey governor helped raise money for George W. Bush's 2000 bid, and Bush later appointed him U.S. Attorney for New Jersey.
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    But Christie said on Thursday night he felt even if the two ran against each other, "I don't think that means it has to end a relationship."
    "Friends have run against each other before though ... it's just the way it goes," he said. "If Jeb decides ultimately to run and I decide ultimately to run — I hope that what we could do is to run based upon our particular visions for the country and for our party, and may the best person win."
    Indeed, Christie invited the wide-open primary fight that's developing, arguing that "if it's a smart, respectful, substantive debate, that's good for the party."
    "To the extent that it becomes difficult and divisive, it depends on how those people who are on the receiving end of that deals with it," he said.