Trump gets backing of two governors ahead of multi-state vote

PTI Washington | Updated on January 20, 2018 Published on February 27, 2016

U.S. Republican Presidential candidate Donald Trump and New Jersey Governor Chris Christie (R) attend a campaign rally in Fort Worth, Texas. Christie on Friday announced his endorsement for Trump's presidential bid.   -  Reuters

Christie’s endorsement is significant as he is one of the first establishment Republicans to back Trump.

In a major boost to his White House bid ahead of a multi-state vote next week, Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump has got a surprise endorsement from New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, who was himself a contender till recently.

Close on the heels of Christie’s endorsement, Maine Governor Paul LePage also backed Trump saying, “I’ll be very honest. I originally said I’d like it to be a governor, but unfortunately, the American people are not going for a governor this year. So I’m going to endorse Donald Trump.”

53-year-old Christie, at a rally in Fortworth, Texas, yesterday said, “Donald is a leader. He is a successful person that, like me, isn’t afraid to tell it like it is. Our system is broken and it won’t be fixed from the inside. I am proud to offer my endorsement of his candidacy for President,”

Former White House contender Christie’s endorsement to Trump just ahead of the ‘Super Tuesday’ — in which primary elections would be held in 11 states — is expected to what is supporters said “seal the deal” for the 69-year-old reality TV star-turned-politician.

“It is my great honour to receive the endorsement of the Governor (Christie). We have had a wonderful relationship for many years. He is a solid person that I have tremendous respect for. I am really proud to receive the support of the Governor and his family,” Trump said.

Christie, a former federal prosecutor, is a moderate Republican running a largely Democratic state and was once seen as one of the party’s best hopes in 2016. He dropped out of the presidential race after poor showings in the Iowa and New Hampshire primaries.

Christie’s endorsement is significant as he is one of the first establishment Republicans to back Trump.

Trump, who has won three of the four Republican primaries, is leading in all states that will vote on ‘Super Tuesday’ except Texas, according to opinion polls. In Texas, Trump is locked in a close fight with his main rival Senator Ted Cruz.

Notably, Trump has also been endorsed by Congressmen Chris Collins, Congressman Duncan Hunter, former Governor of Alaska Sarah Palin, South Carolina Lt Governor Henry McMaster, and Arizona Treasurer Jeff DeWitt.

Democratic National Committee National press secretary Mark Paustenbach said Christie’s endorsement is the best example yet that the GOP is the party of Trump.

“The Republican field just isn’t serious and all its candidates have major problems heading into November. If anyone is wetting their pants, as Rubio suggested today, it’s the Republican establishment,” he said in a statement.

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Published on February 27, 2016
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