Voters, even some likely supporters, said Christie's brash style is refreshing at times, but also carries risks.
"I like the fact that he's firm in what he believes in, but that can turn some people off," said Mary Ann Vadas, a retiree who was finishing her breakfast at an Edison, N.J., diner when Christie made a surprise visit Tuesday.
Vadas, a Democrat, said she'll probably vote for Christie next month anyway.
Buono repeatedly tried to paint Christie as a bully who governs with an iron fist. But polls suggest that most voters like what they see. And Christie is refusing to apologize for his tough talk.
"Using direct and blunt language is something I've done my whole life. It's the way my mother raised me," he said. "I am who I am. And I'm not going to change."