Chris Christie won't defend Trump's comments, sticking with him

Story highlights

  • Chris Christie participated in an interview with WFAN Radio in New York
  • The New Jersey governor responded to lewd comments Donald Trump made

Washington (CNN)One of Donald Trump's closest advisers was a no-show at his debate Sunday night, and now we have a clearer understanding of why.

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie revealed Tuesday morning that he was not happy with the way Trump responded after tape of his 2005 lewd and sexually aggressive comments broke Friday night.
"I was there when he found out about it and there's no question in my mind he's embarrassed by it," Christie said during an interview with WFAN Radio in New York. "But I think that he should have been much more direct and much more focused on saying, just saying 'I'm sorry and only I'm sorry and that's what I would have done.'"
    Christie told the radio hosts that he had "issues to deal with in New Jersey" Sunday, which prevented him from appearing at the debate. But sources had told CNN that Christie was upset that Trump wouldn't listen as they were in crisis management mode. Ultimately, Trump did not just say he was sorry, but he tried to turn the tables by bringing allegations against Bill Clinton into it.
    "On the video itself, let's be really clear it is completely indefensible and I won't defend it and haven't defended it," Christie said.
    "That kind of talk and conversation, even in private, is just unacceptable and so I made that very clear to Donald on Friday, when this first came out, and urged him to be contrite and apologetic because that's what he needs to be."
    Still, the New Jersey governor and Donald Trump transition chief said Tuesday said "at this point" he supported the Republican nominee's bid for the presidency.
    Christie conceded that the video may have turned off undecided voters but said he still stood behind Trump.
    "What I would say is again, anybody who hears that video was disturbed by it and offended by it and as well they should be," Christie said, adding, "I've known him for a long time and I'm really upset by what I heard but in the end this election is about bigger issues than just that so at this point I still support him."
    Christie had been a loyal Trump supporter since he ended his own presidential run earlier this year. The New Jersey governor has known Trump for years, and sources say is one of the few who will be blunt with the billionaire when giving political advice.
    Christie's decision to cancel his scheduled television appearance Sunday morning on CNN, and not attend the debate, stands in stark contrast to that of another close adviser and surrogate, Rudy Giuliani. The former New York City mayor not only publicly defended Trump, but helped orchestrate the appearance of four Bill Clinton accusers at the debate itself.