Chris Christie Taunts Trump as ‘Afraid’ of Presidential Debates
Former Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey, one of many few potential Republican presidential candidates keen to assault Donald J. Trump straight, laced into the previous president on Wednesday over his reported reluctance to take part in presidential debates.
“Obviously, he’s afraid,” taunted Mr. Christie, a Trump defender-turned-critic, in an interview with the conservative media character Hugh Hewitt. “He’s afraid to get on the stage towards people who find themselves critical.”
Mr. Trump, the present Republican ballot chief, seems more likely to skip a minimum of one of many first two debates of the 2024 Republican presidential nominating contest, indicating that he doesn’t need to elevate lower-polling rivals. Quite a few them — most notably Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida, who is predicted to announce his marketing campaign quickly — have been reluctant to confront Mr. Trump frontally, an indication of the sway he continues to carry over a lot of the Republican base.
“If he actually cares concerning the nation — and I’ve deep questions on that — but when he actually cares concerning the nation, then he’s going to stand up there, and he shouldn’t be afraid,” Mr. Christie mentioned. He added: “If, in reality, his concepts are so nice, if his management is so excellent, then his lead will solely enhance if he will get on the stage, not lower.”
Asked for remark, Steven Cheung, a spokesman for Mr. Trump, replied, “Who?”
He mentioned that Mr. Christie “has no thought what he’s speaking about and will keep on with being a speaking head as a substitute of making an attempt to play fake candidate.”
In the interview, Mr. Christie — who’s currently polling at 1 to 2 p.c — additionally indicated that he would decide about his personal presidential plans within the subsequent two weeks.
“The presidency will not be a scripted train, and in order that’s why I feel debates are vital,” Mr. Christie mentioned.
He steered that Mr. Trump, who continues to lie concerning the integrity of the 2020 election, was reluctant to debate “as a result of he doesn’t have a number of critical solutions for the issues which can be dealing with the nation proper now. All he needs to do is return and reprosecute the 2020 election as a result of his emotions are harm. He’s a toddler in that regard.”