Christie Goes After Trump in Presidential Marketing campaign Launch, Calling Him a ‘Self-Serving Mirror Hog’
Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie wasted no time going after Donald Trump whereas launching his presidential marketing campaign on Tuesday, calling the previous president and present Republican major front-runner a “lonely, self-consumed, self-serving mirror hog” and arguing that he is the one one who can cease him. A onetime federal prosecutor, Christie was among the many crowded discipline of 2016 Republican presidential candidates steamrolled by Trump. Now that Trump is operating for the White Home a 3rd time, this yr’s crop of rivals don’t have any alternative however to criticize him relentlessly, or threat political historical past repeating itself, Christie says. Kicking off his marketing campaign with a city corridor at Saint Anselm School, Christie recommended that different prime Republicans have been afraid to problem Trump and even point out his identify a lot whereas campaigning — however made it clear he had no such qualms. “A lonely, self-consumed, self-serving mirror hog shouldn’t be a pacesetter,” Christie stated, including, “The individual I’m speaking about, who’s obsessive about the mirror, who by no means admits a mistake, who by no means admits a fault, who at all times finds another person and one thing else guilty for no matter goes incorrect — however finds each cause to take credit score for something that goes proper — is Donald Trump.” Christie enters a rising major discipline that already consists of Trump, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, former United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley and U.S. Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina. Former Vice President Mike Pence will probably be formally launching his personal marketing campaign in Iowa on Wednesday. Mere weeks after dropping out of the 2016 race, Christie grew to become the primary sitting governor and former rival to endorse Trump. He went on to change into a detailed off-and-on adviser earlier than lastly breaking with Trump over his refusal to just accept the outcomes of the 2020 election. Throughout his time as governor, Christie established a popularity as a fighter with a knack for creating viral moments of confrontation. However he faces an uphill battle to the nomination in a celebration that continues to be intently aligned with the previous president, regardless of Trump’s reelection loss in 2020 and Republicans’ poorer-than-expected exhibiting within the 2022 midterm elections. Anti-Trump Republicans are notably wanting to see Christie spar with Trump on a debate stage. However that occur provided that Trump agrees to take part in major debates and Christie meets the stringent fundraising standards set by the Republican Nationwide Committee for participation. JP Marzullo, a former state consultant and former vice chairman of the New Hampshire Republican Social gathering, beforehand backed Trump however is now supporting Christie. “I feel he’ll truly unite a few of the voters, and he’ll get to independents,” Marzullo stated of the previous governor, including, “I feel it’s time for a change.” Christie started criticizing Trump by identify mere moments into his half-hour speech Tuesday, saying the previous president had “made us smaller by dividing us even additional and pitting us one in opposition to the opposite.” He additionally stated President Joe Biden “is doing the identical factor, simply on the opposite aspect.” Christie famous that he’d recognized Biden for many years and that he was a pleasant man, however stated that the president is “out of his depth” as a result of “he’s not the man he was,” referencing the 80-year-old Biden’s superior age. However Christie’s chief goal was Trump. “There’s an enormous argument in our nation proper now about whether or not character issues, and now we have leaders who’ve proven us again and again that not solely are they devoid of character, they don’t care.” Christie stated. “We are able to’t dismiss the query of character anymore, all people. If we do, we get what we deserve, and we must personal it.” Christie advisers are planning a nontraditional, nationally targeted marketing campaign primarily based on earned media consideration, as a substitute of specializing in particular states. Their candidate stated staying aggressive in opposition to Trump was key and scoffed Tuesday at what he stated had been Trump’s failed guarantees, together with a pledge to wall off the complete southern U.S. border and have Mexico pay for it. “The rationale I’m going after Trump is twofold,” Christie stated. “One, he deserves it. And two, it’s the way in which to win.” Christie will take a look at the urge for food amongst Republican voters for somebody who has expressed assist for a lot of of Trump’s insurance policies however has criticized the previous president’s conduct. The previous governor has urged the occasion to maneuver on or threat future losses. Different Republicans with comparable views, together with former Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan and New Hampshire Gov. Chris Sununu, have opted in opposition to their very own campaigns, expressing considerations that having extra candidates within the race will solely profit Trump. Christie was at one level seen as one of many Republican Social gathering’s brightest political stars as the favored Republican governor of a Democratic state. However regardless of persistent urging from prime donors and occasion officers, he declined to run for president in 2012. By the point he introduced in 2016, his popularity had been tarnished by the “Bridgegate” scandal by which aides had been accused of wreaking site visitors havoc in Fort Lee, New Jersey, in an obvious effort to punish town’s mayor for failing to endorse his reelection bid. The previous governor has recognized Trump for almost 20 years however their relationship has been difficult. Christie was on the shortlist to function Trump’s vice chairman, oversaw Trump’s early White Home transition efforts, stated he was provided — and turned down — a number of Cupboard positions, and helped Trump put together for every of his basic election debates in 2016 and 2020. However Christie additionally clashed with Trump at occasions and has described the previous president’s refusal to just accept his 2020 election loss to Biden as a breaking level. Christie opting to start out his 2024 bid at a New Hampshire city corridor recalled his first run on the White Home, when he targeted on the state, holding dozens of New Hampshire city corridor occasions solely to complete sixth in its major. He dropped out of that race shortly afterward. After his speech Tuesday, Christie took prolonged questions from the viewers — a standard incidence in early voting states that DeSantis was hesitant to do when launching his marketing campaign. Christie additionally talked overtly about his underwhelming 2016 efficiency, regardless of concentrating so closely on New Hampshire. “I misplaced,” Christie laughed. “You folks did that to me in 2016.” ___ Colvin reported from New York. Related Press Author Will Weissert contributed to this story from Washington.