Chris Christie has some advice for Trump ahead of yet another likely indictment

Chris Christie was on ABC this weekend bashing Donald Trump as the former New Jersey governor charts a path to the GOP nomination which he believes necessitates a direct showdown with the ex-president.

Mr Christie, who previously served as a federal prosecutor, told ABC’s Jonathan Karl on Sunday that his opponent needs to choose his words carefully going forward to escape further criminal liability.

“Trump needs to be smart and careful about this, if that’s at all possible. Which is [to say] that he is a criminal defendant,” he said.

It was advice that is unlikely to be followed. Mr Trump has pursued an aggressive campaign of indignation and charges of political weaponisation against prosecutors in New York and Washington DC who have charged him with more than 70 criminal counts in three matters: His alleged hush payments to Stormy Daniels, his efforts to change the results of the 2020 election, and his allegedly illegal retention of classified materials from the White House.

Mr Trump has even personally targeted the Department of Justice’s special counsel, Jack Smith, and warned that anyone who participated in the investigations against him will face his wrath. The agency has, as a result, sought to chill his speech on social media and elsewhere regarding the open criminal case against him.

Mr Christie holds a unique position as a 2024 contender and rival to ex-President Trump: He was known to have been in the running to serve as Mr Trump’s attorney general in the wake of the 2016 election. He also helped Mr Trump prepare for debates against Joe Biden in 2020.

Now, he battles his former ally for the GOP nomination, arguing that Mr Trump’s actions in the wake of his defeat are roundly disqualifying.

“This guy has been a one-man crime wave,” Mr Christie previously said of Mr Trump’s numerous indictments during an April interview with Pod Save America.

“Look, he’s earned every one of them. If you look at it, every one of these is self-inflicted. And that’s why, you know, do I think that prosecutors exercise prosecutorial judgment in discretion in some respects that are questionable? Yeah – and they always have. But what I say to people all the time is whether you agree or disagree with the prosecutors, look at the underlying conduct.”

Mr Trump has denied wrongdoing in all the criminal cases against him.

Despite this, his legal team is said to be expecting further criminal charges in the coming days, filed this time by prosecutors in Georgia investigating the Trump campaign’s efforts to pressure local officials into throwing out the state’s lawful 2020 election results for months after the election took place.

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