Philadelphia News & Search
New Jersey Gov. Christie acknowledged in a series of Wednesday morning television appearances that he would be named chairman of a new Trump administration commission to combat opioid abuse, while reaffirming his intention to serve out the remainder of his term in Trenton.
“This is an epidemic in our country,” Christie said on Fox News Channel’s “Fox and Friends,” referring to addiction to opioid painkillers and heroin. The commission will look at prevention and law enforcement but Christie stressed the importance of treatment.
“Addiction is a disease, and we need to get people the help that they need to renew their lives and help become productive members of society and our families,” Christie said.
He is scheduled to meet with Trump and other members of the opioid panel for its first meeting in the White House cabinet room at 11 a.m. Christie has made fighting the drug problem the top priority of his last days as governor.
In interviews on NBC’s “Today” show, “Fox and Friends,” and ABC’s “Good Morning America,” Christie tiptoed around questions about the congressional investigation into ties between the Russian government and the Trump campaign, the failure of the GOP bill to replace Obamacare and early missteps by the administration.
On “Today,” host Matt Lauer pressed Christie to give President Trump and his team a letter grade for the first 70 days.
“You know, Matt I don’t want to turn over my college transcript or yours either, so I’m not going to start giving out letter grades,” the governor said. “It’s an Incomplete. It’s nine weeks down and 199 weeks to go in the first term of this administration. I’d suggest that everybody take a breath. I’ve never seen such breathlessness over nine weeks of work.”
Christie declined to say Rep. Devin Nunes (R.,Calif.), the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, needs to recuse himself from a leadership role in the Russia investigation because of close ties to Trump and his team. Nunes was a transition adviser and recently visited the White House to review some intelligence and brief Trump on the investigation.
“That’s a judgment for him to make,” Christie said. “What I will tell you is, these intelligence committees, on both the House and Senate side, have been set up to be bipartisan, and they are bipartisan and I think they’ve done a great job over the years investigating matters and overseeing the intelligence community.”
After dropping out of the presidential race after the New Hampshire primary last year, Christie was the first major Republican figure to endorse Trump. He was considered for vice president and attorney general, but was passed over. Christie has said he turned down the opportunities because his wife did not want to move to Washington.
Philadelphia News & Search