Now that the country is settling into the realization that Donald Trump will become our president, people are wondering about which policies he will implement and, as importantly, who he'll appoint to his cabinet. Rudy Giuliani, Newt Gingrich, and other prominent surrogates are being buzzed about, but how about Trump's favorite hostage? Will Chris Christie be in Trump's cabinet?
With the nation dealing with the effects of an even deeper emotional and ideological divide after Election Day, the political implications of Trump's choice in cabinet members are a curiosity at the forefront of people's minds. After all, a president is significantly less effective without a team of savvy cabinet members. Unsurprisingly, at this point, all clues point to Trump having a cabinet of largely white men.
It feels like a given that the New Jersey governor would be in Trump's cabinet after Christie endorsed Trump shortly following his withdrawal from the race for the Republican nomination. Christie went on to become the head of Trump's White House transition team.
However, despite his heavy involvement in Trump's campaign, Christie's position in Trumps cabinet is not set in stone. In an interview with Matt Lauer on NBC's Today on Thursday, Christie revealed that while he and Trump and have discussed the transition itself, they have yet to define a long-term role for Christie:
I have a job do to help get the administration ready. If there’s some role for me that I want to do, and that the president-elect wants me to do — we’ve known each other for 14 years — we’ll talk about. Maybe it’s host of the Today show, Matt. Who knows.
Nailing down a cabinet position for Christie may remain on the back-burner since he's in charge of overseeing the presidential transition itself.
Of course, there's also speculation that he won't be included in Trump's cabinet because of the scandalous Bridgegate trials. Last week, Christie's former deputy chief of staff, Bridget Anne Kelly, and Christie's Port Authority appointee, Bill Baroni, were convicted on all counts of fraud, conspiracy, and "depriving the residents of Fort Lee, New Jersey, of their civil rights," as Reuters noted, for their involvement in the Bridgegate lane closures. Christie himself will have to appear in court in response to a citizen's complaint regarding Bridgegate, as Politico noted.
Thus, even if Christie does not face the felony charges his staffers did, the fallout of Bridgegate may very well affect if he earns a place in Trump's cabinet.