Ex-NJ Gov. Chris Christie Says He Has COVID-19

By Jeannie O'Sullivan
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Law360 (October 3, 2020, 4:31 PM EDT) -- Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie said on Twitter Saturday that he has COVID-19, an announcement that followed an appearance on "Good Morning America" in which Christie said he had helped with debate prep for a maskless President Donald Trump, who announced his own positive diagnosis early Friday. 

"I just received word that I am positive for COVID-19," Christie's tweet said. "I want to thank all of my friends and colleagues who have reached out to ask how I was feeling in the last day or two. I will be receiving medical attention today and will keep the necessary folks apprised of my condition."

Christie helped Trump prepare for his debate with Democratic challenger Joe Biden, which was held Sept. 29.

In a tweet later Saturday, Christie said he was in the hospital.

"In consultation with my doctors, I checked myself into Morristown Medical Center this afternoon. While I am feeling good and only have mild symptoms, due to my history of asthma we decided this is an important precautionary measure," the Tweet said.

A former federal prosecutor for the District of New Jersey and now a political consultant, Christie served as New Jersey's governor from 2010 to 2018 before pursuing a failed bid for the White House in 2016. Christie chronicled his subsequent endorsement of Trump's campaign, which didn't pan out to a job in the White House, in his autobiography, "Let Me Finish."

His tenure as New Jersey's 55th governor was stained when three of his appointees were criminally charged with carrying out a politically motivated plot to block access to the George Washington Bridge in Fort Lee, New Jersey, in September 2013. Prosecutors said the infamous traffic jam aimed to avenge Fort Lee Mayor Mark Sokolich's refusal to endorse Christie's reelection bid.

Former Christie aide Bridget Anne Kelly and onetime Port Authority of New York and New Jersey executive Bill Baroni were sentenced to prison time, but their convictions were overturned by the U.S. Supreme Court. Another former Port Authority executive, David Wildstein, founder of the political website New Jersey Globe, cooperated with the government and was sentenced to probation.

In addition to Christie, Trump and first lady Melania Trump, other notable Republicans who announced they have tested positive for the coronavirus in the last week include White House aide Hope Hicks, former White House counselor Kellyanne Conway, Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna Romney McDaniel and Trump campaign manager Bill Stepien, who formerly managed Christie's gubernatorial campaigns.

--Editing by Jill Coffey.

Update: This story has been updated with Christie's hospitalization.

For a reprint of this article, please contact reprints@law360.com.

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