Chris Christie: National Guard Leader Given Strict Order To Lose Weight

Republican presidential hopeful and governor of New Jersey, Chris Christie, has given the leader of New Jersey’s National Guard a strict order: he has 90 days to slim down to meet military fitness obligations. According to a report from ABC News, Chris Christie ordered Air Force Brigadier General Michael Cunniff to lose weight after learning he was reprimanded by the Pentagon last year for his excessive weight and for missing multiple physical-fitness tests.

Kevin Roberts, Gov. Christie’s spokesman, released the following statement on Monday addressing the matter.

“The governor has expressed directly to the general that his failure to meet that standard or to provide notification of his formal reprimand is both unacceptable and disappointing.”

In a statement to the Washington Post, Roberts said the governor is disappointed by the actions of the general. The military allegedly already received warnings from the Pentagon regarding Cunniff’s weight and his penchant for dodging physical exams. The National Guard leader acknowledged his problems with weight loss and accepted responsibility for not meeting his fitness requirements in the past. Cunniff also said he is taking steps to solve the problem.

“I have struggled with weight control my entire adult life,” Cunniff expressed. “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. Many people struggle with weight control — I am not immune from this,” the general wrote.

As reported by the Associated Press, it was not made clear how many pounds the general must shed in order to meet “military fitness obligations.”

Cunniff took a fitness test in November, 2013, his first in over three years. The report states that Cunniff failed the test because his waist size was measured at 43.5 inches — 4.5 inches larger than what was allowed.

Although Chris Christie has ordered Cunniff to lose weight, he is no stranger to weight loss struggles himself. Christie secretly underwent weight loss surgery in February, 2013, after numerous requests from family members. Christie didn’t reveal how much weight he lost after the procedure, but there was definitely a dramatic change in his appearance.

“It’s the best thing that I’ve ever done for my health. And I look back on it now and wish I’d done it years ago,” Christie said.

[Image via Justin Sullivan/Getty Images News]