Ever since Donald Trump replaced New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie as the head of his transition team with Vice President-elect Mike Pence, suspicion has been rife that the “Bridgegate” scandal was what caused Trump to replace him.
While a Monday report from Yahoo News indicated that Bridgegate played some role in the firing, sources within the Trump campaign said that the president-elect was angry at Christie’s obnoxious behavior on election night, when the governor tried to push to get in photographs with the newly-elected president.
The report also stated that Christie’s absence from work had been so conspicuous that many were surprised he even showed up on election night.
Yahoo News said that “according to a high-level campaign source familiar with Trump’s thinking, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie kept pushing to be near the president-elect and ‘trying to get in shots.’”
“Trump got annoyed,” the source told Yahoo.
That wasn’t all. Yahoo reported that “two staffers said Christie did alarmingly little work on the transition and was largely absent from the campaign during the weeks leading up to the election, when Trump was widely expected to lose. According to one account, campaign staffers had been so accustomed to Christie’s absence that they were surprised to see him appear at campaign headquarters in Trump Tower — on Election Day.”
“Where was Christie? Where was he? He certainly wasn’t planning the transition. We (didn’t) have nearly as much planning as we should have,” one of the staffers was quoted as saying.
A Politico report published Saturday also said that Trump was annoyed that Christie seemed to be filling up the transition team with lobbyists and New Jersey cronies, in direct opposition to the president-elect’s promise to “drain the swamp.”
He also found that Christie had done extremely little vetting of the candidates’ backgrounds, which was something Trump realized the Democrats could jump on.
Trump has never been one to accept poor performance from those who he employs, and he proved that this summer when Paul Manafort was forced out as the head of Trump’s campaign. This seems to be another similar instance of Trump seeing something he didn’t like and acting on it with relative quickness.
Even if Christie may have lost the job at the top of the transition team, he may not be out of the Trump administration entirely. As New York Magazine pointed out, Christie met with the president-elect at the Trump National Golf Club in his home state on Sunday, and may still get a job in the administration.
As for the transition team job, though, that’s passed him by. And if these reports are true, it’s all for the better.
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