Former New Jersey governor Chris Christie believes the House of Representatives impeachment articles being considered against President Donald Trump are warranted.
On “This Week with George Stephanopoulos” Jan. 10, when asked by the host if President Trump had committed an impeachable offense, Christie responded “oh, sure, yes.”
“I mean, what we had was an incitement to riot at the United States Capitol. We had people killed,” stated the former governor. “And, to me, there’s not a whole lot of questions here.”
On Jan. 6, the U.S. Capitol was overrun by domestic terrorists after a “Stop the Steal” rally headline by President Trump. During his speech, the President urged those in attendance to march to the Capitol building to protest the Electoral College certification of President-elect Joe Biden’s win. Six people have died related to the day’s actions, including two U.S. Capitol police officers. One of them, Brian Sicknick, was a New Jersey native.
At the rally, President Trump’s speech included violent imagery and calls to fight harder than before. Among the passages critics have pointed to was the President telling those gathered “We’re going to walk down to the Capitol, and we’re going to cheer on our brave senators and congressmen and women, and we’re probably not going to be cheering so much for some of them, because you’ll never take back our country with weakness. You have to show strength, and you have to be strong.”
Additionally, the President stated “We will never give up. We will never concede…We fight like hell, and if you don’t fight like hell, you’re not going to have a country anymore. We are going to the Capitol to try and give them the kind of pride and boldness that they need to take back our country.”
Christie said members of the Republican party currently seated in Congress would have to vote their conscious but stated “I think if inciting to insurrection isn’t (an impeachable offence), then I don’t really know what it is.”
The Morris County resident then took the President to task for the delay in mourning the loss of Officer Sicknick. The flag’s at the White House were lowered to half staff Sunday afternoon, four days after the passing of the New Jersey native.
“I mean, it is a national disgrace…that the flag at the White House is not at half-staff for that Capitol Hill police officer, who gave his life in protecting one of our institutions of democracy,” declared Christie. “If we’re having to fit of pique, and that’s why we’re not putting a flag at half-staff, it’s just another example of why people think that these decisions are not being made on the merits; these decisions are being made purely with an idea of what’s in my own personal desire at the moment on the part of the President.”
“It’s just wrong.”
Christie, who said he had not spoken to the President since these events on Jan. 6, believes the idea of a self-pardon is no longer viable.
“I think self-pardon at this point is off the table,” said Christie, a confidant to President who helped him prepare for the the 2020 Presidential debates. “I think if he tried to do something like that now, it would force Congress to act even after he was out of office.”
Asked about the current states of the Republican party, the former governor noted the GOP gained 14 seats in the House, flipped two state legislative chambers and a governorship.
“The Republican Party recovers by talking and articulating about the issues that we care about and that are important to the country,” said Christie. “In the end, that’s what will determine, always has determined, the fate of each political party.”
Commenting about the loss of two senate seats in Georgia, Christie placed the blame more on President Trump than the candidates who lost.
“(The outcomes) were determined by the President of the United States who continued his insane behavior in the eight weeks since the election in terms of continuing to complain about the fact that it was stolen from him,” he said. “I think that had a huge effect on the election both in boosting Democratic turnout and in depressing Republican rural turnout.”