Chris Christie, a former governor of New Jersey, participated in the second Republican primary debate held at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, California. During the discussion, he voiced his disapproval of former President Donald Trump. Christie addressed his comments to Trump, saying that he was aware that Trump was watching the debate and accusing him of avoiding the debate stage to defend his record. He also said that he knew Trump was watching the debate.
Christie stated that Trump was “ducking” the debate and warned that if he continued to do so, he would no longer be referred to as “Donald Trump” but rather as “Donald Duck.” Trump has denied Christie’s allegations that he is “ducking” the discussion.
The tensions and divides within the Republican Party about Trump’s status and influence inside the party are reflected in these statements, which reflect those tensions and divisions.