New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie endorses Donald Trump for president
Chris Christie endorses Donald Trump
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie threw his support behind Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump on Friday, Feb. 26, saying Trump's "the best person" to run against Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton in a general election. (Reuters)
FORT WORTH, Tex. — Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump on Thursday received the high-profile endorsement of New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who called the billionaire the best candidate to take on Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton.
“I've gotten to know all the people on that stage, and there is no one who is better prepared to provide America with the strong leadership that it needs both at home and around the world than Donald Trump,” the former GOP presidential candidate said during a press conference with Trump here in Fort Worth.
Christie said that he believes the party needs to elect the candidate most likely to beat Clinton. Trump, the governor said, is “undoubtedly” the best person for the job and “is rewriting the playbook of American politics.”
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Trump, who stood smiling next to Christie as the governor announced his support, called it "a very big endorsement." He said Christie's support means a lot to him and his campaign, calling it "the one endorsement" that he wanted most.
“Donald Trump is someone who when he makes a promise, he keeps it,” Christie said. "No one is going to get inside this guy's head. There is no better fighter than Donald Trump."
Christie’s endorsement comes as the Trump campaign seeks to charge forward toward the Republican nomination through a strong showing on the March 1 “Super Tuesday” primaries, when 11 states will cast ballots in the GOP primary. Christie’s support is a boon for the billionaire, whose critics have accused of being unprepared to take office.
Christie said that he finalized his decision to endorse Trump after ending his own presidential campaign. He said he sat down with his family to discuss their role in the campaign moving forward and concluded that “it was clear the only choice was Donald Trump, the best choice was Donald Trump.”
Both Christie and Trump emphasized that they have known each other for years both personally and professionally. Trump dismissed a question about whether Christie was being considered for the vice presidential nomination, saying that they never discussed that when Christie called to offer his endorsement.
The surprise backing is a blow to Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), who is seeking to become the main challenger to Trump for the Republican nomination. On Friday, Christie blasted Rubio's escalating personal attacks against the billionaire, calling them an act of desperation. Christie added that Rubio represents the Washington establishment.
“I find it fascinating that somebody who barely shows up for work…is going to talk about somebody being unprepared,” Christie said.
“He’s a desperate guy,” Trump said of Rubio. “He is not presidential material. He doesn’t have the demeanor. He is a nervous Nellie.”