Christie: ‘The idea of making predictions for 2024 is folly’
Washington, DC (CNN)Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie — who has been outspoken against former President Donald Trump’s lies about the 2020 election results — says he does not want to make predictions about 2024 and is unsure whether he or Trump will run again.
“I don’t know that he’s going to run. I don’t know whether I’m going to run,” Christie, a longtime friend and high-profile supporter of Trump, told CNN’s Dana Bash in a clip from “Being … Chris Christie,” the second episode in CNN’s “Being …” series that will air in full on Monday, November 15 at 10 p.m. ET.
Pressed by Bash if he would support Trump should the former President run again, Christie said that while the former President is “seriously considering it,” Christie would like to “see what happens when he does.”
“Let’s see who he is and what he says and how he conducts himself,” Christie said.
Despite Trump’s actions since Election Day 2020, Christie is not going to speculate about how he could behave moving forward while there are still three years until the next presidential election, he said.
“I’m not going to sit here in 2021 and pre-judge all this. I voted for him in ’16 and in ’20. On election night in ’20, I said that what he was doing was absolutely horrible and wrong and continued to be. You can draw whatever conclusions from that you want. But in the end, in 2021, the idea of making predictions for 2024 is folly,” Christie said.
“There’s no reason to create tumult in a party that already has a lot of tumult in it,” he said.
Christie, whose new book “Republican Rescue: Saving the Party From Truth Deniers, Conspiracy Theorists, and the Dangerous Policies of Joe Biden” comes out Tuesday, has in recent weeks been vocal about his vision for the future of the GOP. He’s delivering a message to Republicans that the only way for the party to continue building on this month’s electoral successes is to move beyond past elections.
Christie, a former 2016 presidential candidate, was just one of a half-dozen potential GOP contenders for the White House who addressed the Republican Jewish Coalition conference last weekend in Las Vegas, laying the groundwork for their potential bids as the party waits to see whether Trump attempts another run for the Oval Office in 2024.
“We can no longer talk about the past and the past elections — no matter where you stand on that issue, no matter where you stand, it is over,” Christie told some of the Republican Party’s most influential donors and bundlers at the time. “Every minute that we spend talking about 2020 — while we’re wasting time doing that, Joe Biden, Kamala Harris, Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer are laying ruin to this country. We better focus on that and take our eyes off the rearview mirror and start looking through the windshield again.”
Christie condemns Trump’s defense of threats to Pence on January 6
Christie, appearing on ABC’s “This Week” on Sunday morning, was asked by George Stephanopoulos during a roundtable about new audio that shows Donald Trump defending the threats made against then-Vice President Mike Pence during the January 6 insurrection.
At the time, some rioters could be heard shouting, “hang Mike Pence,” who was at the Capitol that day presiding over the Senate’s counting of the votes.
Pressed by Stephanopoulos if those comments should concern the Republican party, Christie said, “It’s up to the leaders of the party to choose how big a problem they want to make it.”
“I don’t think it’s radical for Republicans to say that we should not be in favor of saying it’s common sense for people to chant ‘hang the vice president of the United States,'” Christie said.
“We’ve got to decide as a Republican Party, are we going to talk about tomorrow … or are we going to continue to look backwards? And we can’t continue to do that if we want to be a winning party,” he said.
Christie said that if Trump continues to fixate over the results of the 2020 election, he cannot have a strong hold over the Republican party.
“President Trump cannot continue to be a strong influence on the broad part of this party if a year from now he’s still talking about 2020,” Christie said, adding that the strategy will not be to the former President’s advantage.
“It will not work for him over time,” Christie said.
“The American people move on,” he continued, adding that he believes Americans are focused on the current challenges they face in their day-to-day lives.
“They can’t buy gasoline. Why isn’t he talking about that? Why isn’t he talking about the $29 toilet paper. Why isn’t he talking about the failures of the administration that’s proceeded him? Then he could be a positive influence on the debate going forward, but all he wants to do is talk about himself and go backwards. That’s why I don’t want to talk about it,” Christie said.
Christie points to Virginia and New Jersey GOP candidates distancing from Trump
Christie on Sunday also spoke about the Republican candidates in Virginia and New Jersey who distanced themselves from Trump ahead of this month’s elections. Most notably in Virginia, Republican Glenn Youngkin won the governor’s seat after staying at an arm’s length from the former president.
“What we saw in Virginia and what we saw in New Jersey were two candidates that affirmatively said, ‘We don’t want Donald Trump to come here and campaign for us.’ Affirmatively said it. Now, if I told you that a year ago, nobody would believe me,” Christie said.