Facts about Christian Christie
Chris Christie Biography
Republican Chris Christie was the governor of New Jersey from 2010-18, and made an unsuccessful run for U.S. president in 2016.
A New Jersey native, Chris Christie once said he began aiming for politics when he was still a teenager. He graduated from the University of Delaware in 1984, went on to earn a law degree from Seton Hall University in 1987, then returned to New Jersey to enter private practice. He was a friend of the George H. W. Bush presidential campaign in 1992, and in 1993 Christie ran unsuccessfully for state senator against a longtime Republican incumbent.
Two years later he was elected to local office in Morris County. Christie’s political rise was due in part to his work for presidential candidate George W. Bush in 2000: He got a presidential appointment as the U.S. Attorney for New Jersey in 2001, where he stayed until just after Barack Obama was elected president in November of 2008. Christie resigned his post and, playing up his record of prosecuting corrupt politicians, ran for governor and won in 2009.
Chris Christie put his blunt personal style to full use as the state’s chief executive; he was called a bully by his detractors while supporters described him as forthright and brave. Even so, he built a reputation for working with members of the opposition. He tested the waters for a run for president in 2012 and encountered a backlash from conservatives — to the point where he was criticized for being polite to President Obama after Superstorm Sandy damaged New Jersey.
Although Christie was easily re-elected as governor in 2013, early 2014 brought a scandal known as “Bridgegate” to his front door. Several of Christie’s top staffers resigned after it was discovered they had closed freeway lanes in Fort Lee in order to punish the mayor there for not endorsing Christie’s re-election bid. Christie has never been personally implicated, and despite the scandal, Christie announced in June of 2015 that he would run for the Republican presidential nomination in 2016.
He ended his campaign in February of 2016 after finishing sixth in the New Hampshire GOP primary. Later that month he endorsed Donald Trump, becoming the first state governor to do so. He briefly led Trump’s transition team in 2017 before being dropped in favor of VP-elect Mike Pence. Christie completed his second term as governor early in 2018, and was succeeded by Democrat Phil Murphy.