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Christie: Ready to Help Trump No Matter Who He Picks as VP

Image: Christie: Ready to Help Trump No Matter Who He Picks as VP
Chris Christie (Getty Images)

By    |   Thursday, 14 Jul 2016 01:20 PM

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, one of the finalists remaining in the running to become Donald Trump's running mate, said that no matter what the presumptive nominee says in an expected telephone call Thursday afternoon, he's prepared to keep working to push the New Yorker to the White House and he's not worried about not having a role in the Trump campaign or presidency.

"What matters most to me is helping him get elected president, and if he is to make sure he's a successful president for our country and the world because we need one," Christie told MSNBC's Nicolle Wallace during a Thursday morning exclusive interview at the governor's mansion in New Jersey.

"Those are are my priorities," he continued. "I think as I get older those things rise above ambition. And if you're wondering as I said a number of times why I'm so calm, that's why. Because this is not the most important thing. Who he picks is not the most important thing. The most important thing is beating Hillary Clinton and getting this country back on track."

Another finalist, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, told The Associated Press Thursday morning that he is expecting to hear from Trump sometime after 1 p.m. Trump has said he'll make his announcement official at 11 a.m. Friday in an announcement from Trump Tower, but MSNBC's Brian Williams commented that it's likely the name will leak at some point Thursday night.

And no matter what Trump says on that phone call today, Christie said he plans to "take a deep breath and prepare for tomorrow."

Christie, though, admitted that he is a competitive person and he won't say it won't bother him if he's not picked, and he doesn't plan to hit the baseball cages and relieve stress if it doesn't happen.

"Because if you're a competitive person like I am and you're used to winning like I am, again, you don't like coming in second," said Christie. "Ever. But I won't need to go out to the batting cage and hit off the machine. I'll just go back to work. I've got work this afternoon as governor that I've got to do and I'll go back and do that and not worry about it. If he calls me and tells me that he wants me to do this, then I'll take a deep breath and get ready for that challenge. Either way I'll have challenges ahead of me and I'll be ready to take them on."

Christie told Wallace that he has not yet heard the news, and that he doesn't know if Trump has made his decision, but meanwhile, he's not acting as an advisor for the decision-making process.

"I wouldn't advise him on this because I'm biased," said Christie. "So I couldn't give him unbiased advice ... but I'm also biased toward myself. I'm not going to go in and advise him to pick someone else ... and what matters most to me is helping him get elected president and if he is to make sure he's a successful president for our country and the world because we need one. Those are my priorities."

He also said he does not believe that he's owed the vice presidency, even though he shifted quickly after dropping his own presidential campaign to supporting Trump and becoming an adviser to him.

He said he looks at former President George H.W. Bush as an example of helping the competition after a difficult race against Ronald Reagan for the White House.

"He competed hard against him," said Christie. "And never in the eight years did you ever hear him have a negative word to say or disagree publicly about Ronald Reagan. And I think when you read Ronald Reagan's diaries, though, you recognize that George Bush 41 played a huge role in telling Ronald Reagan the truth as he saw it and he helped to make Ronald Reagan a better president. George Bush wasn't owed that position. But he earned it."

Christie said he has been thinking about the steps to getting the government ready for Trump if he wins, including getting good choices for those serving under him.

Christie also criticized people like former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and other Republicans who have refused to back Trump, and said it's not a "binary choice" over who is picked.

"Gary Johnson's not going to be president of the United States," said Christie. "I have great respect for the Bush family, most particularly for President [George W.] Bush 43, who I was honored to serve and who Mary Pat and I consider to be a very dear friend and a very generous adviser to me during my political career. So I'm not going to be critical of them for making the choices they make."

But at the same time, "if you're a Republican and you're not working for Donald Trump you're working for Hillary Clinton," said Christie.

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New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, one of the finalists remaining in the running to become Donald Trump's running mate, said that no matter what the presumptive nominee says in an expected telephone call Thursday afternoon, he's prepared to keep working to push the New Yorker...
chris christie, help, trump, vp
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2016-20-14
Thursday, 14 Jul 2016 01:20 PM
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