'Scared to death of Chris Christie'? Trump plots counterprogramming for GOP debate

'Scared to death of Chris Christie'? Trump plots counterprogramming for GOP debate
WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 26: U.S. President Donald Trump shakes hands with New Jersey Governor Chris Christie as first lady Melania Trump looks on during an event highlighting the opioid crisis in the U.S. October 26, 2017 in the East Room of the White House in Washington, DC. Trump plans to authorize the Department of Health and Human Services to declare a nationwide public health emergency in an effort to reduce the number of opioid overdose deaths across the nation. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Donald Trump “has been proposing counterprogramming” for next week’s Republican presidential primary debate, CNN reports, as MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough posits the former president is “scared to death” of former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie.

According to CNN, sources including “campaign advisers” and people “close to the former president” say Trump “is not planning on participating” in the Fox News debate, which will be held in Milwaukee next Wednesday. Instead, Trump “has been throwing out different ideas for his own counterprogramming during the debate” including a potential sit down “with former Fox News host Tucker Carlson.

Sources say “conversations regarding a potential interview with Carlson have taken place with Trump’s team, but there is no definitive plan for him to do that as of now,” CNN reports.

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Meanwhile, Trump critic Scarborough claimed the former president is fearful of a debate with rival Christie.

“Obviously, [Trump’s] political gut instinct is second to none, like he sees it coming,” Scarborough said. “And so I think he’s scared to death of Chris Christie and will not have the guts to go or the nerve to go on stage with Chris Christie anywhere.”

The “Morning Joe” host claimed Trump saw what Christie “did to Marco Rubio” on the debate stage in 2016 and noted that the former New Jersey governor “put Jared Kushner’s father in jail for a very long time.”

“[Trump] knows [Christie’s] a prosecutor who’s ruthless and knows how to push his case,” Scarborough added.

READ: Republicans’ 'untethered' Hunter Biden claims demolished by WaPo fact-checker

Scarborough said Trump’s “secret sauce in 2016 was being the disruptor” but warned “that gig” is “like eight years old.”

“That’s Elvis in ’77 now,” Scarborough quipped.

While the “current thinking” among Trump campaign advisers is that the former president will skip out on the debate, CNN reports members of his team have been “coordinating with his surrogates to represent him in the spin room in Milwaukee next week.”

Per CNN:

Members of Trump’s campaign team are also planning be in attendance, three sources with direct knowledge of their plans tell CNN. It’s unclear, however, if Fox News will allow Trump’s surrogates and members of his campaign to attend if the former president himself does not show.

Trump, CNN reports, “has not done any prep for the debate.

READ: The 'bad behavior' that might finally put Trump behind bars

Watch the MSNBC video below or at this link.

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