Chris Christie conceded in an interview Tuesday he was “disappointed” that Donald Trump didn’t pick him to be his running mate — but he’s already “over it.”
The New Jersey governor was one of the final three contenders in the running for the GOP vice presidential nomination, but Trump instead picked Indiana Gov. Mike Pence. Christie said he knew he was “close,” but didn’t think he was going to make the final cut.
“When it was clear that Donald wanted me to compete for this job and to be considered, I wanted to win, of course you do. But it’s not like my lifetime dream is to be vice president of the United States,” Christie said in an interview with CNN’s Jamie Gangel. “So I’m disappointed, no doubt I was disappointed, but I’m over it.”
Before Christie was in the running to be Trump’s running mate, he had been considered a top contender for the job of U.S. attorney general in a Trump administration.
But even with the vice presidential selection process behind him, Christie wouldn’t reveal his interest in that position and said he and Trump have not discussed the position or what Trump’s cabinet would look like.
“We haven’t talked about any of that stuff, and I don’t think, quite frankly, it would be appropriate to discuss it — discuss the vice presidency until I got a call … telling me that the campaign wanted me to be vetted,” Christie said. “Donald and I never talked about it before that, because it’s awkward. I don’t want to seem like I’m lobbying for the job, and quite frankly, I don’t think it was what his focus was. He was focused on winning the nomination. So the cabinet can wait until he wins.”
Christie also called on his former 2016 GOP presidential rivals Ohio Gov. John Kasich and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush to make good on the pledge they signed to support the Republican nominee for president. The two men have said they cannot support Trump.
“It’s a binary choice, buddy. So if you’re a Republican and you’re not voting for Trump, you’re voting for Hillary,” Christie said, as if addressing Bush.
As for Kasich, Christie said, “He made a promise. Now, where I come from, a promise is a promise.”
Christie is set to address the Republican convention Tuesday night and said he will draw on his career — from federal prosecutor to governor and presidential candidate — to point to “what I think we need and don’t need in a president of the United States in 2017.”