Chris Christie has doubled down on his “Donald Duck” jibe against Donald Trump, claiming he “lives in the head” of the former president.
Using language often employed by Mr Trump, the Republican candidate took aim at his former ally on Thursday after mocking him during the GOP debate on Wednesday night.
Mr Trump is the runaway leader for the Republican nomination to take on Joe Biden in next year’s US election but did not take part in the televised event. This left the floor open for Mr Christie, who worked as Mr Trump’s transition manager in 2016, to call him “Donald Duck”.
“He’s ducking these things,” Mr Christie said. “Donald, I know you’re watching… If you keep doing that, no one up here is going to call you Donald Trump anymore. They’re gonna call you Donald Duck.”
Mr Trump is a big fan of giving playground nicknames to his rivals, with Sleepy Joe Biden, Crooked Hilary Clinton and Lyin’ Ted Cruz being three of his favourites. He had previously called the former New Jersey governor Sloppy Chris Christie. The former president said of the comparison to the Disney character that anyone who made a joke like that “should not be running for president”.
But Mr Christie was unperturbed and on Thursday said his message had got through to the former president. “I live in his head,” he told Fox News.
“[Mr Trump] knows what I said is true. That’s why he spent most of his time last night in the debate reacting to the stuff I said and attacking me.
“What he should be doing is getting out on the debate stage and defending his record.”
Asked if he would accept an offer to be Mr Trump’s vice president, Mr Christie said “no chance”.