New Jersey Governor Chris Christie is ordering his National Guard chief to lose weight

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The Associated Press reports New Jersey Governor Chris Christie has given the head of the state's National Guard 90 days to meet official military weight and fitness requirements.


Air Force Brig. Gen. Michael Cunniff has been reprimanded by the Pentagon "about his weight and repeatedly dodging physical-fitness tests," the AP says.

The report comes on the heels of an investigation into the performance of the Garden State's National Guard under Christie by the Washington Post's Craig Whitlock. Whitlock's story is headlined, "Inside Chris Christie’s militia, flab and cronyism trigger mutiny in the ranks," which pretty much tells you all you need to know, although here is the money quote:

“It’s like the mob,” said Brian K. Scully, a retired Army lieutenant colonel who says he lost his job because he refused to help cover up the general’s affair. “One minute you’re the made man. The next, you get a bullet in the back of your head. Only here it’s career assassination.”

Whitlock says Christie's staff wasn't even aware of Cunniff's official reprimand until he contacted them about it. Cunniff sent Whitlock the following statement:

Many people struggle with weight control — I am not immune from this,” he said. However, I do recognize that military members and leaders, like myself, are held to a higher standard. I take this matter seriously and am taking the necessary steps to remedy this issue.

In February 2013, Christie had Lap-Band surgery to accelerate his own fitness regimen; the Post has pinned estimates of his pre-surgery weight at as much as 350 pounds.

Read Whitlock's full story here »

Rob covers business, economics and the environment for Fusion. He previously worked at Business Insider. He grew up in Chicago.