Former New Jersey Republican Governor Chris Christie has said that the Capitol riot on 6 January was “driven from the top” referring to former President Donald Trump.
Speaking on ABC’s This Week on Sunday, anchor George Stephanopoulos noted that “it seems like, every single day … we’re learning more about what was going inside … the White House in those days leading up to January 6”.
Stephanopoulos cited the PowerPoint presentation handed over to the House Select Committee investigating 6 January by former Trump White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows that stated that Trump should declare a national security emergency in order to stop then-President-Elect Joe Biden’s election victory from being certified by Congress.
A lawyer for Meadows, George Terwilliger, said that Meadows received the presentation in an email but didn’t do anything with it, according to The New York Times.
The revelations may “explain why the former president and his allies are working so hard not to cooperate,” Stephanopoulos added.
“Well, look, all the things that you see were driven from the top,” Christie said. “I mean, the president made it very clear that he did not want to concede the election, that he would not concede the election. And you got a bunch of people around him by the time we got to the end, with very few exceptions, that were C team players, at best, on their best day.”
“So, C team players get in there, and they tell the boss what he wants to hear. There were plenty of people on the outside who were telling him, ‘this is over, and you need to concede’. He didn’t want to hear that. So he went to the C team players and got that,” Christie added.
“I think that the committee is doing important work,” the former governor and presidential candidate said. “I go back to making one point, though, which I wish Nancy Pelosi would have done differently. If, in fact, she would have let Kevin McCarthy put the people on the committee he wanted to put on the committee, with Democrats in control, it wouldn’t have made any difference anyway. And it would have given the committee more credibility with Republicans.”
Speaker Pelosi rejected two of Minority Leader McCarthy’s picks for the committee – Ohio Rep Jim Jordan and Indiana Rep Jim Banks. McCarty also submitted Illinois Rodney Davis, North Dakota Rep Kelly Armstrong, and Texas Rep Troy Nehls to work on the committee, but when Pelosi rejected two of his choices, McCarthy decided to pull the Republicans out of the process entirely.
Two Republicans now sit on the committee after being invited by Pelosi – anti-Trump GOP representatives Liz Cheney of Wyoming and Adam Kinzinger of Illinois.
“The problem now is that, because she dictated for, the first time in my memory, who the minority party can have on a committee, it does affect to some extent, among people in my party, the credibility the committee has,” Christie said.
“In the end, the facts are going to come out, but let’s not kid ourselves. This was a driven-from-the-top process executed by C team players. And that’s why it looks like a Keystone Cops operation because it was,” the former governor said, referencing a series of slapstick comedies about incompetent police officers made in the 1910s.
Once allies, Trump and Christie are now in a feud that’s heating up. Christie blasted Trump’s Big Lie that the 2020 election was stolen from him during a speech in Las Vegas to the Republican Jewish Coalition conference in Nevada.
“We can no longer talk about the past and the past elections—no matter where you stand on that issue, no matter where you stand, it is over,” Christie said.
“Chris Christie, who just made a speech at the Republican Jewish Coalition (RJC) in Las Vegas, was just absolutely massacred by his statements that Republicans have to move on from the past, meaning the 2020 Election Fraud…Everybody remembers that Chris left New Jersey with a less than nine percent approval rating—a record low, and they didn’t want to hear this from him!” Trump responded in a statement.
“I’m not gonna get into a back-and-forth with Donald Trump,” Christie told Axios. “But what I will say is this: When I ran for re-election in 2013, I got 60% of the vote. When he ran for re-election, he lost to Joe Biden.”