(RepublicanJournal.org) – Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie dropped out of the GOP primaries ahead of the last Republican debate. The move leaves Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, former UN Ambassador Nikki Haley, and businessman Vivek Ramaswamy as the only contenders remaining against Donald Trump in the bid for the 2024 race. Christie vowed to continue his fight against the MAGA leader, although a slip near a hot mic revealed that he’s confident that at least one of the former president’s challengers will “get smoked.”
Christie made the announcement on January 10, according to CBS News, bowing out ahead of the final Republican debate before the Iowa caucuses. He and Ramaswamy failed to qualify this time around, both falling well short of the 10% voter support they needed in at least three CNN-approved primary polls. The Guardian notes that Trump also qualified, but he opted to do another town hall meeting in lieu of facing off against his opponents.
Acknowledging that he no longer had any shot at winning, Christie shared that he would continue to do whatever he could to ensure Trump never set foot in the Oval Office again. USA Today states that he placed sinking the 45th president above “[his] own personal ambition.” He fell short when it came to naming a favorite between the remaining contenders — but if he does name someone, it probably won’t be Haley.
Christie reportedly has little faith that she’ll be able to stay afloat. He mentioned her while unaware that he was in front of a hot mic, according to The Hill, reportedly comparing ad figures and claiming she was “punching above their weight” and would “get smoked” in the polls.
Haley responded to Christie’s decision to drop out with grace, praising him for fighting a hard campaign. His move could give her the edge she’s needed to step up as a real contender against Trump.
USA Today predicts that Christie’s absence might give Haley a boost in the New Hampshire primaries, narrowing the former president’s lead over the former ambassador to only about 15 percentage points.
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