Chris Christie officially announced his second presidential campaign on Tuesday at a town hall event in New Hampshire. The former governor of New Jersey immediately sought to discredit Donald Trump as the leading Republican candidate.

The announcement came a day after GOP moderate, New Hampshire Gov. Chris Sununu opted out of the race, and just 24 hours before former Vice President Mike Pence entered. Christie plans on appealing to the more traditional conservatives; he believes that he is best positioned to challenge Trump in the primary and attract interest from independents in a general election standoff with President Joe Biden.

“I can’t guarantee you success,” Christie said in his announcement speech, “but I can guarantee you at the end of it, you will have no doubt in your mind who I am and what I stand for and whether I deserve it.”

Christie’s disapproval of Trump is a far cry from his previous allyship with the former president. After dropping out of the 2016 presidential election, Christie publicly supported Trump’s campaign and continued to advise the Trump administration throughout the 2020 election.


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However, following Trump’s attempts to block Biden from taking office and overturn the most recent election, Christie set out to establish himself as one of Trump’s chief Republican critics. He described his past support as an error and publicly condemned Trump to his own party.

“Beware of the leader in this country,” warned Christie, “who you have handed leadership to, who has never made a mistake, who has never done anything wrong, who when something goes wrong it’s always someone else’s fault. And who has never lost.”

Christie did not come for Biden with as much aggression on Tuesday but did deem him too old to continue in office.

“He’s a nice man,” said Christie of Biden. “He’s out of his depth because he’s not the guy he used to be… Father Time always wins.”

When asked on Tuesday whether he had a plan to win over “Trump voters,” Christie shut down the idea that Trump’s supporters are so deeply tied to him.

“There is no such thing as ‘Trump voters.’ He doesn’t own them… They’re not one of his casinos in New Jersey… I voted for him twice. Am I a Trump voter? Hell no, man.”

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