Chris Christie, who used to be the governor of New Jersey, said on Monday that the GOP needs a candidate who can knock out Donald Trump with a single, brutal blow, like the one Christie used against another rival in 2016.
Speaking in New Hampshire, Christie recalled a favorite moment from his failed presidential campaign: embarrassing Marco Rubio on a debate stage three days before the first-in-the-nation primary.
After Christie pointed out that Rubio didn’t have much experience, the Florida senator said the same thing twice. It was a cringe-worthy moment that ended with Christie saying, “There it is. The 25-second speech he had to remember. Everyone, there it is.”
Christie, who is thinking about running again, said that Trump will never leave quietly.
“You better have someone on that stage who can do to him what I did to Marco,” he said at the New Hampshire Institute of Politics at Saint Anselm College. “That’s the only way to beat Donald Trump.” “And that means you can’t be scared, because he will come back and come right at you.”
Christie told people to think about who has the skills and courage to do that.
He said, “Because it’s not going to end well, no matter what, his end won’t be calm and quiet.”
Even though that debate was a high point for Christie, he quit the race less than a week later after coming in sixth place in the Republican primary in New Hampshire. He quickly backed Trump and was a close adviser to him while he was president. However, he broke with the former president when Trump refused to accept that he had lost the 2020 election.
Since then, Christie has become one of the few well-known people in his party who doesn’t like Trump. He uses his job as an ABC political analyst to say that Trump is much weaker now than he was in the past. On Monday, he said that Trump was leading the GOP down a “sinkhole of anger and revenge.”
“About two weeks ago, Donald Trump said, ‘I am your revenge.'” What do you know, everyone? Not really. Christie said on Monday, “No dice.” “He doesn’t want to be my retribution. That’s not true. The only person he cares about is him.”
Saul Shriber, 67, of Chester, said he voted for Christie in 2016 even though he wasn’t happy with Christie’s answer when he asked, “When are you going to take down Trump?”
Christie said at the time, “I have my plan.”
Shriber said, “I thought if anyone on the stage could go after Trump, it would be the smash-mouth New Jersey guy.”
Christie said that he and the other candidates made a “strategic mistake” when they thought they would get a chance to go up against Trump one-on-one on Monday. Instead, their campaigns were short-lived.
Shriber was happy with that answer, so he said he would vote for Christie again.
“If he wants to be honest with me, I’m all for it,” he said. “I’m ready to let it go.”
The key to Christie’s 2016 campaign was the state of New Hampshire. The then-governor camped out in the state for months and held dozens of town halls. This was how he became famous in New Jersey, where videos of his colorful comments and heated arguments with critics went viral.