Ron DeSantis thinks Chris Christie 'missed his moment' by skipping a 2012 presidential bid, report says
- DeSantis thinks Chris Christie "missed his moment" in running for the White House in 2016, per WaPo.
- Christie passed on a 2012 campaign and opted to run in 2016, where he faced Donald Trump.
In 2009, Chris Christie leaped to the top of the national political conversation, having won the New Jersey gubernatorial election as a Republican only a year after then-President Barack Obama won the solidly-blue state in a landslide.
Christie, a hard-charging former federal prosecutor with a blunt demeanor, quickly became a leading pick among Republican voters to potentially take on Obama in the 2012 presidential election. But after mulling over a presidential run that year, Christie eventually declined to challenge Obama and instead opted to run for reelection in 2013.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, who is up for reelection in November and could potentially launch a 2024 presidential bid of his own, has thought about Christie's decision to forgo a 2012 campaign and instead run in 2016, according to The Washington Post.
DeSantis, who could find himself in a race with both Trump and Christie in 2024, feels that the New Jersey governor "missed his moment" by choosing to run in 2016 instead of 2012, according to the report.
By the time Christie entered the 2016 contest, Donald Trump had just announced his White House campaign and was quickly becoming a phenomenon within the party, which would lead to him winning the GOP nomination and the general election. And Christie's aura had also dimmed.
The New Jersey governor was bruised after a high-profile scandal — dubbed "Bridgegate" — in which several of his political appointees colluded to create backups at the heavily-trafficked George Washington Bridge as political retribution against a local official.
There is no indication that DeSantis, who critics note has some political baggage of his own, would defer on a 2024 White House bid should Trump decide to launch a campaign.
Per the report, Dan Eberhart, a donor to DeSantis, said that several advisors informed him of the governor's thinking.
Eberhart told The Post that many individuals in DeSantis' political orbit want him to run for president in 2024.
Earlier this year, The Washington Post reported that Casey DeSantis, the governor's wife, wanted him to launch a 2024 White House bid, citing three individuals with knowledge of related conversations.
But Trump remains — at the moment — far ahead of any of his potential rivals in virtually every major national poll surveying GOP voters.
In a POLITICO/Morning Consult poll conducted in mid-September, 52% of respondents said they would back Trump in a 2024 GOP presidential primary, compared to DeSantis with 19% support. Christie was backed by 1% of the respondents.
Insider reached out to the DeSantis campaign for comment.
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