PALO ALTO (KCBS) — Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey traveled to Palo Alto Wednesday evening for a fundraiser hosted by Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

Christie, a Republican, has been in the national spotlight over the past few months, from his high-profile handling of Hurricane Sandy last fall, to his recent appearance on the Late Show with David Letterman.

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While Wednesday’s fundraiser was for Christie’s 2014 re-election campaign, the Silicon Valley could be essential if he runs for president in 2016.

“The [Silicon] Valley is generally much more Democratic. They went gaga over Obama and supported him hugely in the last election. So for him to toe-hold here and to start to get people focused on him is a good thing,” said Peter Leyden with Reinventors, a network of tech-savvy educators.

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Leydon said appearances in Silicon Valley may also help Christie court younger voters, who have tended to support Democratic candidates.

“He’s actually more moderate you could say, or in some respects has more progressive values on some levels than a lot of the conservatives in the Republican Party. I think it does give him a second look. A lot of people are going to start thinking he might be something to gravitate toward if you are inclined to vote GOP,” Leydon said.

Leyden added that Silicon Valley is important for any candidate, regardless of political affiliation.

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