Journalist Roland Martin had an heated exchange with former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) on Sunday over the politician history of enabling former President Donald Trump’s conspiracy theories.
During a panel segment on ABC’s This Week, host George Stephanopoulos said Christie had argued that it is time for the Republican Party to move away from the claim that the 2020 presidential election was stolen. “I’m on a course to make sure that my party remains relevant,” Christie told Stephanopoulos. “You’re now seeing more and more Republicans saying they’re buying into the conspiracy theories,” Stephanopoulos added.
“I think it’s moving in the other direction,” Christie disagreed. “It’s taken hold among some Republicans.”
“You say what you believe,” he added. “That’s what I try to do here every week I’m on and I said what I believed on Thursday night and it’s what I’m going to continue to believe.”
Martin, who was on the panel, didn’t agree with Christie’s message.
“The Republican Party, they made their choice,” Martin said. “And I appreciate the speech, Governor. But the reality is this. You have to admit the role that you played in putting the person in leadership who is driving the conspiracy theories.”
“It’s one thing to condemn them after the fact,” he went on said. “But you have to own up to the role that you played in putting the person in power.”
“I don’t have to admit anything to you!” Christie yelled.
“Can I finish?” Martin asked.
“I ran against Donald Trump!” Christie exclaimed.
“You ran against him but when a person has principles, morals and values, they do not support them even if you lose,” Martin asserted. “And what they say is I choose patriotism and the country over party and power. And the problem was too many Republicans chose power and riding with Donald Trump as opposed to patriotism and America.”
“I’ll sleep fine tonight with you judging my morals,” Christie said.
“What I also want to see in America are Republicans and Democrats who have the guts to stand up to narcissists, to folks who lie, to folks who led the country in the wrong direction,” Martin said. “And what that man has unleashed on this country, any Republican who stood with him has to own it and accept the role that they played.”
“I accept the role that I played in my belief that Hillary Clinton was not the right person to be president,” Christie said. “We all get to make choices, Roland, in this democracy. And I made my choice. I’m on record with my choice and I’m not walking away from my choice. But it does not preclude me from being able to be critical when the person that I did support does things that I am against.”