Gov. Christie has said he believes climate change is real. But "I don't buy the fact that it's a crisis," he said Tuesday.
"The climate's always changing and we cannot say our activity doesn't contribute to changing the climate. What I'm saying is it's not a crisis," Christie said on MSNBC's Morning Joe, which went to Concord, N.H., to interview the governor, who is riding a new wave of endorsements this week in the state that hosts the first presidential primary.
Asked what scientists he was relying on for that assessment, Christie said, "I didn't say I was relying on any scientists. I don't see evidence. I don't see evidence that it's a crisis."
At a meeting of world leaders in France Monday, President Obama said "the growing threat of climate change could define the contours of this century more dramatically than any other."
The climate talks have drawn 30,000 diplomats and delegates and are aimed at reaching a global pact to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. At stake is "the future of the planet," French President Francois Hollande said.
Christie – who has accused the president of devoting too much attention to climate change and not enough to ISIS – said Tuesday that Obama was "focused on the wrong climate change."
"The climate change we need is a climate change in this country," Christie said. "The climate right now between the people and their government is just poisonous. The climate right now between the races is as bad as it's been in the last eight years."
On the topic of whether people on a terrorist watch list should be able to buy guns, Christie noted that he had signed a bill to bar those on a list from doing so in New Jersey.
Asked about opposition to that approach within his party and whether he would "fight for, in the convention's platform, a binding resolution" stating that people on a terrorist watch list can't obtain guns, Christie said: "My record on terrorism and how we deal with terrorists is pretty firm. I don't think you have to worry about that."
In another national television interview a little more than a week ago, Christie said he did not support federal legislation to ban people on watch lists from buying guns, saying that determination should be left to states.
Christie remains in the single digits in presidential primary polls, including in New Hampshire, where he has concentrated his campaign efforts.
But his campaign has touted new support in the state – including the endorsement of the New Hampshire Union Leader this weekend – as a sign the governor is getting a second look.
Of the new buzz, Christie said Tuesday: "I hope by Feb. 9" – the date of the New Hampshire primary – "it translates into higher numbers in the polls."
"The reason why this is happening is for one simple reason," he said. "I've been talking about the same things for the last six months. And I've always thought that the most important thing is national security, and the security of the homeland. And people are now coming around to that. After Paris, they understand, acutely."