New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) seems to be gearing up for an imminent presidential campaign announcement.
On Tuesday evening, Politico reported Christie could be making a “formal announcement … as soon as next week, according to several sources familiar with the discussions.” Business Insider separately spoke to a source who said Christie appears to be launching his bid next week.
“All indications are that an announcement will come next week,” the source said.
A Christie spokesperson did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Business Insider. However, his announcement was long expected to come after New Jersey’s Legislature finalised the state budget and that should be concluded within the next week or so. There have also been several recent signs Christie is making final preparations to launch a White House bid.
Christie’s team has been staffing up in early primary states. And earlier this month, one of his top aides, Maria Comella, left her position in his government office for a job at his political action committee. Comella is one of Christie’s top aides. She spent over five years working in his office and became his deputy chief of staff for communications and planning earning a reputation among the governor’s allies as one of the best PR professionals in politics.
Christie, who took office in 2010, has long been seen as a probable 2016 candidate. As a Republican governor in a blue state with penchant for making blunt, off-the-cuff commentary, he was initially seen as having wide name recognition and potential bipartisan appeal.
The so-called “Bridgegate” scandal that erupted in late 2013 damaged his standing in the presidential field. However, in May, when prosecutors announced three former officials linked to the governor would face charges for allegedly scheming to order lane closures on the George Washington Bridge as part of a political revenge plot, they indicated there would not be “any further charges related to the matters discussed in today’s indictment.” This left Christie seemingly in the clear and fit with his contention that he was unaware anyone in his orbit was involved in the “Bridgegate” scheme. Christie’s allies are also confident that, once he hits the campaign trail, his flair for retail politics will help him win over voters and donors and climb through the Republican pack.
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