Back in July, with only a week leading up to the Republican National Convention, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump had narrowed his vice presidential selections to three primary picks: New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, former Speaker Newt Gingrich and Indiana Gov. Mike Pence. Ultimately, the VP slot went to Pence, but a new report by the New York Post reveals Trump’s original choice was actually Christie.
On July 12, the New Jersey governor contacted Trump to try to win him over to be his running mate. “Trump cares about who’s the most loyal and who kisses his a–- the most, not who’s the most qualified and what’s the best political decision,” a source close to the campaign told the New York Post.“If it was up to him, it would have been Christie.”
Then, a second source told the publication that Christie thinks “he deserves it and he earned it… he said all the BS that Trump likes to hear, and Trump said, ‘Yeah, sure I’m giving it to you,'” according to the newspaper.
However, GOP advisers and members of his family reportedly actively wanted Trump to choose Pence as his running mate. Trump’s campaign chairman at the time, Paul Manafort, arranged for him to meet with Pence in Indianapolis on July 13. After learning his plane was having mechanical malfunctions and they would have to stay one more night, the GOP nominee was swayed by Pence.
The advisers and Pence warned of the issues Christie would bring with the Bridgegate controversy, and that it would destroy the credibility of the Trump campaign. “Trump had wanted Christie but Bridgegate would have been the biggest national story,” a third Trump source said. “He’d lose the advantage of not being corrupt.” Reportedly, when Trump told Christie he would then not be choosing him, he said it would “tear my family apart if I gave you VP.”
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