Former Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey on Friday turned his fire from former President Donald J. Trump, his usual target of attack, to his Republican rivals with higher popularity in the polls for the nomination.
Christie's campaign released its first television ad of the campaign cycle, criticizing Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida and Nikki Haley, the former governor of South Carolina, for attacking each other instead of attacking the former president, whom everyone follows for a wide distance. margin.
“Chris Christie is the only one who can beat Trump because he's the only one trying to beat Trump,” says the narrator of Christie's 30-second ad.
The six-figure ad buy, first reported by Axios, is being broadcast in New Hampshire on local broadcasts and national outlets, including CNN, CNBC and MSNBC's “Morning Joe.”
This comes as Christie tries to boost himself ahead of the Jan. 23 primary in New Hampshire, where he is running in third place behind Trump and Haley. She has bet that a strong showing in the Granite State, avoiding the nation's first caucuses in Iowa, will keep her campaign afloat in future races.
The ad cited polls showing Haley and DeSantis trailing Trump by double digits.
“Nikki Haley, 26th behind Trump in her home state, attacks DeSantis,” says a voiceover, citing an ad from the super PAC supporting Ms. Haley that called him “too dumb to lead, too weak to win.” ”. The ad then pivots to DeSantis: “DeSantis, trailing Trump by 32 in Iowa, attacks Nikki Haley,” the narrator says, airing a clip from DeSantis’ super PAC saying “you can’t trust Tricky Nikki.”
“There is only one candidate trying to stop Trump,” the ad says, before airing footage of Christie attacking Trump on the debate stage.
The Times reported last month that Haley's super PAC had spent $3.5 million on ads attacking DeSantis, but none specifically attacking Trump. (On Friday, Ms. Haley called on the former president to participate in the Iowa debate, saying, “It's getting harder and harder for Donald Trump to hide.”)
While DeSantis has been more attacking Trump's record in recent weeks, his super PAC, Never Back Down, spent 10 times more on efforts to criticize Haley than Trump did.
Christie trails Trump by more than 50 points in national polls, with his support hovering in the low single digits.
He has spent the fewest days campaigning among the remaining GOP candidates, a New York Times analysis showed. The campaigns and super PACs supporting DeSantis, Haley and Trump have far outspent him.
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