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Story highlights

Chris Christie says he disagrees with Pope Francis over U.S.-Cuba relations

He says Pope Francis is infallible 'on religious matters, not on political ones'

(CNN) —  

Chris Christie is Catholic, but he’s breaking with Pope Francis over whether to deepen U.S. diplomatic ties with Cuba.

“I just think the Pope is wrong,” the New Jersey governor and Republican presidential candidate said Sunday in an interview with CNN’s Jake Tapper on “State of the Union.”

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“The fact is that his infallibility is on religious matters, not on political ones,” Christie said.

He blasted President Barack Obama for establishing closer ties with a country that has granted political asylum in the 1970s to Joanne Chesimard, the convicted killer of a New Jersey state trooper.

“And the fact is that for me, I just believe that when you have a government that is harboring fugitives … that this President could extend diplomatic relations with that country … is outrageous,” Christie said.

He added: “I just happen to disagree with the Pope on this one.”