Trump reportedly close to picking Chris Christie in 'reality TV' hunt for new chief of staff

  • President Donald Trump’s quest to replace John Kelly as White House chief of staff has reportedly homed in on former Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey.
  • Christie met with Trump on Thursday to discuss the job,the Associated Press reported.
  • Christie’s background as a prosecutor may appeal to Trump as he faces increasing pressure from the special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into his campaign’s ties with Russia.

President Donald Trump’s quest to replace John Kelly as White House chief of staff has attracted unsolicited celebrity applications – but is believed to have homed in on former Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey.

Christie met with Trump on Thursday to discuss the job, the Associated Press reported.

Trump had hit back at reports that the job, usually a coveted post of paramount importance, didn’t appeal to many candidates on account of the chaos within his administration.

This week Trump said 10 or so candidates had expressed interest. On Thursday, Trump said he was down to a list of about five.

But so far, the highest-profile candidates have been celebrities on the internet. The former baseball star Jose Canseco pitched himself on Twitter, and the British TV personality Piers Morgan used his column for DailyMail.com to make his case.

Trump talked about Christie in a way that made staffers feel as if he could be closing in on the former state prosecutor,Axios’ Jonathan Swan reported.

Christie came up in connection to Trump’s Cabinet when CBS News reported that Christie’s name was in consideration for the post of attorney general in early November.

Christie served as the US attorney for New Jersey for six years until 2008. His chops as a prosecutor may appeal to Trump as the president faces increasing pressure from the special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into his campaign’s ties with Russia.


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The Associated Press said Trump’s very public search for a top staffer had a “reality-TV feel” to it. The author Chris Whipple, an expert on chiefs of staff, told the news outlet the process was “sad to watch.”

Christie ran against Trump for the Republican presidential nomination in 2016 but quickly dropped out. Christie later endorsed Trump and campaigned for him the rest of the race.

Christie’s term as governor of New Jersey ended this year, at which point he was among the least popular governors in his state’s history.

After Trump’s election, Christie was considered a favourite to head the Justice Department, but he took no role in the administration. He has been largely absent from politics since ending his term as governor.

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