News and Commentary

Christie On Election: ‘Very Close Race,’ Trump Campaign ‘Surging’
President-elect Donald Trump and New Jersey Governor Chris Christie shake hands before their meeting at Trump International Golf Club, November 20, 2016 in Bedminster Township, New Jersey.
Drew Angerer/Getty Images

On Sunday, former Republican New Jersey Governor Chris Christie appeared on ABC’s “This Week” with host George Stephanopoulos to discuss the final days of the election campaign.

During a roundtable segment, Stephanopoulos asked Christie his opinion on whether or not President Trump would “accept defeat” if he were to lose on November 3.

“Chris Christie, you talked about the states you’re going to be watching on Tuesday night. It could take some time to count the votes,” Stephanopoulos said. “Separate question though, if it doesn’t go the president’s way, you know him pretty well, is he prepared to accept defeat?”

Christie stressed that he believes that the president will accept the results of the election, whatever the outcome, and added that the campaign is actually surging.

“Yes. Yeah, I think he is—and I think a lot of the stuff you’ve heard him saying at rallies indicate that,” Christie said. “He understands where he is in this race.”

I think as with most candidates, as you get to the end here, and I think [Donna Brazile is] right, I think the president’s campaign is surging now. I think he’s comfortable. I think he’s a lot happier than he’s been in a long time. You see that in these rallies that he’s doing. This is his sweet spot.

But he also is not gonna be a guy who is gonna sit there and not leave the White House, okay? He will abide by the decision of the voters. I’m confident of that.

The former governor continued, stating that there will possibly be “tumult” following Election Day as he believes it will “be a very close race” rather than a “blowout.”

“You don’t think we’re gonna know Tuesday night, do you?” Stephanopoulos pressed.

“I do not think we’re gonna know on Tuesday night, particularly because of Pennsylvania,” Christie replied, noting the court decision to allow extra days to “accept ballots that are postmarked by Election Day.”

Nevertheless, Christie said he thinks that while President Trump may not have always believed he was going to win, he does now.

“But I think there also is part of him that knows that not leaving the White House, putting up that kind of stink in terms of peaceful transition just is not the way he wants the leave,” Christie added. “And, by the way, if it’s Pennsylvania and it’s close, be guaranteed there’s gonna be litigation.”

According to the RealClearPolitics polling average for Pennsylvania, Democratic candidate Joe Biden leads President Trump by 4.3% in the state, which Trump won by 0.7% in 2016.

Among all the recent polls from the state, two outliers suggest the race may be closer than expected. Trafalgar Group’s late-October poll had Trump and Biden tied 48% to 48%, and the latest InsiderAdvantage poll has the president up by 2%.

In North Carolina, the other battleground state mentioned by Christie earlier in the segment, Biden leads by a hair (+0.3), with recent polls showing support for Trump increasing.

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