What Friction? Christie Says He'd Be 1st In Line to Back Trump in '24 Chris Christie speaks with then-President Donald Trump at a Washington event in 2017. (Getty Images)
By Fran Beyer | Tuesday, 23 November 2021 04:30 PM
Chris Christie says he’ll be the first in line to support former President Donald Trump in 2024 if he decides to run — a declaration that comes after Christie’s criticism of Trump’s 2020 election-fraud claims.
In a Monday interview with Fox News host Laura Ingraham, the former New Jersey governor said Trump would be able to count on him. A clip of the interview was posted by Mediaite.
But in “The Axe Files” podcast with David Axelrod, Christie said the issue he had was Trump "standing behind the seal of the president and saying the election was stolen, and then offering not one piece of evidence to support that.”
He also said he spoke with one of Trump's sons, not specifying which, and asked for evidence before he lent his support. Trump has contended widespread and systemic fraud gave the presidency to Joe Biden, though multiple legal challenges to the vote have not gained traction.
"If you have evidence that the election was stolen that's convincing, I'll fight with you,” Christie told the podcast.
That aside, Christie said he'd never vote to re-elect Biden.
"I didn't vote for him in 2020 and I certainly couldn't vote for him in 2024,” Christie told the podcast.
"I cannot support someone like [Independent Vermont Sen.] Bernie Sanders, people like [Massachusetts Democratic Sen.] Elizabeth Warren, go through the whole list of people that were standing on that stage in 2020 and assuming any one of them is the nominee I could not vote for that person, no," he said.
In the Fox interview, Ingraham reminded Christie that he did not like Trump but was a fan of his policies, and Christie confirmed that in his interview.
"The policies I supported. You know Laura, the line of supporting Donald Trump starts behind me,” he said.
"I was the first elected official in America to endorse him in 2016. I prepped him in 2016 for the debates and prepped him for the 2020 debates. I stood up for him as the chairman of his opioid commission and the chairman of his transition."
Christie also spoke about the importance of getting back to winning in politics against the Democrats and said "we need to be a contrast to Joe Biden.”
"We have got to stop complaining and we have got to start working to be a contrast to Joe Biden and to stop him in his tracks in 2022,” Christie told Ingraham.
"Every minute we spend looking backward is a minute we are not spending stopping them.
"I don't want to go through more any more years of Democratic control."
It’s unclear whether Trump is definitely running in the 2024 election, but he’s dropped hints suggesting he will.
"Well, let me just put it this way. I love our country and I think a lot of people are going to be very happy,” he told Ingraham on Friday night, a response later posted on Twitter by Trump's spokesperson Liz Harrington.