Yet another tell-all Trump insider book is set to hit the shelves, and the opening previews have revealed more even more details of the Republican Party’s dysfunction and perpetual score-settling that puts the President’s son-in-law squarely in the hot seat.
Former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie became one of Donald Trump’s most shameless public advocates after losing his presidential bid and getting publicly owned on the debate stage.
But not even his bootlicking deference and hamburger-fetching could earn him a seat in the Trump administration, thanks to the machinations of Jared Kushner; now Christie is finally getting his revenge.
In the most consequential passage of The Guardian’s advance book review, Christie reveals that it was Ivanka Trump’s husband who “guided” the new President through the firing of both National Security Advisor Gen. Flynn and former FBI Director James Comey.
He does… contend that Kushner misjudged two Russia-related firings: that of Flynn in February 2017 and most famously that of the FBI director James Comey in May the same year.
According to Christie, Kushner thought firing Flynn would end talk of links between the Trump campaign and Russia – it did not – and that firing Comey would not provoke “an enormous shit-storm” in Washington.
Chris Christie also excoriated the convicted and disgraced Gen. Flynn for the criminal acts that led a DC federal judge to ask if he could’ve been charged with treason last month during a botched sentencing hearing:
In one of the book’s more memorable put-downs, Flynn is dubbed “the Russian lackey and future federal felon”.
Christie also calls the former general “a train wreck from beginning to end … a slow-motion car crash”.
He also blamed former Alabama Senator and Attorney General Jeff Sessions for much of Trump’s problems, even though if he’d gotten the job himself, he too would’ve had to recuse from the Russia investigation due to his role inside the campaign:
US attorney general, the other role Christie would have accepted, also eluded him.
As with most appointments he is scathing about the man who got the job, Jeff Sessions, whom he calls “not-ready-for-prime-time” and whose recusal from the Russia investigation he blames for its ever-growing scale.
In fact, the Trump transition team still offered Christie cabinet roles and ambassadorships and he turned them all down. The other job Chris Christie wanted was chairman of the Republican National Committee, but Trump’s family put the kibosh on that too:
Christie would have taken chair of the Republican National Committee and seemed poised to get it. But according to Christie, once again Trump’s family worked against him.
All this must be taken with a grain of salt, since Christie makes it clear that his vitriol against Kushner is a response to Kushner’s own personal vendetta against him for the imprisonment of his father, Charles Kushner, for a bizarre prostitute-and-blackmail scheme that the elder Kushner perpetrated against his own brother.
“Steve Bannon … made clear to me that one person and one person only was responsible for the faceless execution that Steve was now attempting to carry out. Jared Kushner, still apparently seething over events that had occurred a decade ago.”
The political assassination was carried out by Kushner as a personal vendetta, Christie writes, that had its roots in his prosecution, as a then federal attorney, of Charles Kushner in 2005.
Ironically, it was his father’s criminal conviction by Christie which was the event that thrust young Jared into the position of power atop his family’s real estate business, eventually leading to his marriage with Ivanka Trump and his current place in the White House, which he “earned” through nepotism.
But Chris Christie book is about so much more than sour grapes for being dumped by Trump after selling out so completely that nobody would ever take him seriously again.
Christie makes the case that the Trump transition team’s numerous failures under the direction of VP Mike Pence after Christie’s firing have turned into national security problems overnight, with the obvious implication that Christie himself would have avoided those problems.
Now, the transition team is caught firmly the grasp of Special Counsel Mueller’s probe of Trump’s work with Russia and nobody knows who from it, will be indicted next.