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Trump Rewards Christie’s Loyalty with Fundraiser in New Jersey | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Donald Trump Attends Fundraising Rally For NJ Gov. Chris Christie

Governor Chris Christie has been severely defeated ever since he dropped out of the Republican presidential race and backed Donald Trump to win the White House. Now after months of receiving endless support, Trump returns the favor.

Trump appeared at a fundraiser in New Jersey, Thursday night, to help retire the debt Christie still carries from his failed presidential campaign. Both Trump and Christie showed up at a National Guard armory where people paid $200 to get in the door and help Christie pay down about $400,000 in campaign obligations. Moreover, Trump also appeared at a $25,000-per-head event to support Christie.

These amount to the first campaign fundraising events for Trump, who long denounced big-money donors, however, participated in a joint fundraising effort this week between his campaign and the Republican National Committee.

The bitterness exhibited by the men on the campaign trail was gone, where Trump once eviscerated Christie’s record in the state. Here he ticked off a list of Christie’s accomplishments as governor.

“He has brought greatness to every enterprise he has ever led,” Christie said of Trump.

A Quinnipiac University poll released Wednesday showed that about two-thirds of New Jerseyans surveyed disapprove of Christie’s job performance, marking the worst approval rating for any governor in six years of the poll, which surveys nine states.

In addition, almost the majority of residents surveyed, 74 percent, think Trump should not pick Christie as his running mate. Republicans tended to view Christie’s job performance more favorably, but not the idea of him becoming Trump’s No. 2: 64 percent of Republicans surveyed said Christie should not be Trump’s vice president.

On the other hand, New Jersey is dealing with a plenty of fiscal issues, including a sluggish recovery, a decrease in its credit rating and billions of dollars in unfunded pension liabilities. Then there is “Bridgegate,” a 2013 scandal in which Christie staffers and appointees appeared to conspire to create traffic jams to hurt the Democratic mayor of Fort Lee, who didn’t endorse Christie.

Holly Schepisi, a Republican assembly woman who supports Christie but has some reservations about Trump stated that she believes that the reason behind a great number of issues faced in the state, starting from its high property taxes to fiscal matters, has to do more with decades of delay and inaction by the legislature than with Christie’s out-of-state travel schedule or presidential campaign. She also said she appreciates Trump appearing with Christie on Thursday.

“Because of the governor putting himself out there and putting himself out there so early to a lot of negative criticism,” she said, “I think this is Donald Trump’s recognition of that and a small way of attempting to say thank you for the loyalty he has shown.”