Chris Christie put on a rollicking show trial of Hillary Clinton at the Republican Convention on Tuesday night — leading the audience in Cleveland to shout "Guilty!" over and over again in response to his allegations about the former secretary of state.
New Jersey's governor, a former federal prosecutor, allowed the audience at the Quicken Loans Arena to play jury as he presented an “indictment” to them.
“We’re going to present the facts to you, as a jury of her peers, both in this hall and in living rooms around our nation,” the former 2016 presidential candidate said in opening his address to the convention.
“I’m going to render a case on the facts against Hillary Rodham Clinton,” he continued.
Christie argued that Clinton’s character and her record as secretary of state disqualify her for the nation’s top job, accusing her of “ruining Libya,” of being a terrorist apologist for not naming an al-Qaeda affiliate in Nigeria a terrorist group for two years of praising Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
“She fights for the wrong people. She never fights for us,” Christie said.
As he made his case, delegates on the convention floor periodically broke into chants of “Lock her up! lock her up!”
Playing off the crowd at one point, Christie said, “All right, all right, we’re getting there. Give ya a few more minutes. We’ll get there.”
He went on to criticize the nuclear deal with Iran and Clinton’s dealings with Russia, and he called her a “coddler of the brutal Castro brothers” in criticizing the Obama administration’s reopening of diplomatic relations with Cuba.
He focused on the email controversy while she was secretary of state and accused her of lying about it “over and over again.” The Department of Justice declined to prosecute her or those in her inner circle.
“She said there was no marked classified information on her server. The FBI Director said that was untrue,” he said. “She said that she did not email any classified information. The FBI director said that was untrue. She said all work-related emails were sent back to the State Department. The FBI director said that was untrue.”
“We didn’t disqualify Hillary Clinton to be president of the United States. The facts of her life and career disqualify her,” Christie said, wrapping up his remarks, which primarily took aim at the former secretary of state.
“It is time to come together and make sure that Donald Trump is the next president of the United States,” he concluded.
Clinton swung back at Christie, jabbing at him for the “Bridgegate” scandal.
After his failed presidential bid, Christie became the first among Trump’s former opponents to endorse his campaign. Since endorsing Trump in February, Christie has become a close confidant of the presumptive GOP nominee and serves as the chairman of his presidential transition team.
He was also on Trump’s shortlist as a potential running mate, until Trump chose Indiana Gov. Mike Pence last Friday.
Currently in his second term as the governor of New Jersey, Christie previously served as the U.S. Attorney to New Jersey.