Presidential candidate Chris Christie took direct aim at past and present U.S. leaders as he recounted his recent unexpected visit to Ukraine.
In a fiery critique, Christie lambasted Presidents Donald Trump, Barack Obama and incumbent Joe Biden.
The New Jersey Republican held them collectively responsible for the ongoing war in Ukraine, laying the blame for the instability in Eastern Europe at their doorstep, USA Today reports.
“The truth is that years of failed leadership are responsible for (Russian President Vladimir) Putin’s reign of terror in Eastern Europe. And it’s only going to get worse,” said the Christie campaign in an email to supporters obtained by USA Today. “He took Crimea under Barack Obama, buddied up to Donald Trump, and knows that Joe Biden can’t stop him from committing countless war crimes in Ukraine.”
Christie, breaking from a tour of the war-torn region, met with Ukrainian President Volodmyr Zelenskyy and re-pledged his support against the Russian incursion. During his visit, the former governor solemnly stressed the need to comprehend the atrocities meted out by Russian forces against the Ukrainian people.
Christie also implored the U.S. to supply Ukraine with the resources to engage Russian forces on an even keel.
“America is right to supply and I spoke with President Zelenskyy for an hour,” Christie told CNN on Sunday. “All he wants is the ability to fight the war on an even basis.”
This echoes Christie’s past criticisms of Trump’s Ukraine aid policies and highlights his issues with Biden’s reluctance in equipping Kyiv with the necessary resources.
Christie’s stance, however, places his views in stark opposition to that of his party’s reigning figure, Trump. The ex-president has maintained a more cautious approach to U.S. engagement in the conflict. This is a divide exemplified not just by Christie, but also resonated during another Ukraine visit by former Vice President Mike Pence.