Chris Christie has decided against running for president with No Labels, depriving the centrist group of yet another big-name candidate for its proposed third-party ticket.

The former New Jersey governor, who ended his second Republican presidential campaign before voting began in this year’s primaries, said he had received “encouragement” to pursue a third-party run but has chosen not to.

“I believe we need a country that once again feels like everyone has a stake in what we’re doing and leadership that strives to bring people together, instead of using anger to divide us,” Christie said in a statement. “While I believe this is a conversation that needs to be had with the American people, I also believe that if there is not a pathway to win and if my candidacy in any way, shape or form would help Donald Trump become president again, then it is not the way forward.”

Christie, a vocal critic of Trump, had dismissed the notion of a third-party run while still competing directly against the former president in the primary. But he opened the door to the possibility after ending his Republican bid.

When Christie exited the race in January, he said, “I am going to make sure that in no way do I enable Donald Trump to ever be president of the United States again. And that’s more important than my own personal ambition.”

The Washington Post first reported Christie’s decision.

The rejections have been piling up for No Labels. Both Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (I-Ariz.) have ruled out mounting a third-party presidential bid, and former Republican Gov. Larry Hogan of Maryland, another possible option, opted to run for Senate instead. Most recently, former Georgia Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan turned down the group. “For me, the math just got too difficult,” the Republican said.

The organization said in a call with supporters earlier this month that it would make a final decision about moving forward with a presidential ticket by early April. It claims to have ballot access in more than a dozen states.

Read the full article here


Comments are closed.