'You’re trying to beat the guy': Chris Sununu slams GOP 2024 rivals for defending Trump

'You’re trying to beat the guy': Chris Sununu slams GOP 2024 rivals for defending Trump
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New Hampshire Republican Governor Chris Sununu is questioning whether former President Donald Trump's 2024 GOP rivals actually want to win.

The governor insists the Republican candidates could easily use the MAGA 2024 hopeful's federal criminal indictment to their advantage, but for some reason he hasn't figured out — are choosing not to do so.

According to ABC News, former Vice President Mike Pence and 2024 hopeful said Thursday, before his opponent was indicted, "I would hope the Department of Justice did not move forward. Not because I know the facts, but simply because I think after years where we've seen a politicization of the Justice Department is to undermine confidence in equal treatment of the law."

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During an appearance in North Carolina Friday night, according to The New York Times, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis — also a 2024 GOP hopeful — said, "Is there a different standard for a Democrat secretary of state versus a former Republican president? I think there needs to be one standard of justice in this country. Let’s enforce it on everybody and make sure we all know the rules.”

The Times also reports:

While Mr. DeSantis made his remark in reference to the fact that Hillary Clinton did not face charges over her use of a private email server while she was secretary of state, his comments could just as easily have applied to Mr. Trump. And they suggested that he believed both Mr. Trump and Mrs. Clinton should have faced charges — or neither.

Another Trump 2024 rival, former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, took her thoughts on the indictment to Twitter, saying, "This is not how justice should be pursued in our country. The American people are exhausted by the prosecutorial overreach, double standards and vendetta politics."

On the other hand, Haley's comments come after she denounced the Jan. 6 attack, which Trump both caused and fully supported.

READ MORE: 'You pay the price': Nikki Haley denounces Jan. 6 during Iowa visit

Sununu, during a Friday night appearance on CNN's AC360, said he can't comprehend why Trump's GOP rivals are not using his criminal indictment against him.

PBS reports:

The former president is dominating early primary polls, despite his extraordinary legal troubles, his continued lies about the 2020 election that fueled the Jan. 6 insurrection, and serious concerns among GOP officials about his ability to win the general election. Trump nonetheless maintains a strong grip on a significant portion of the Republican base that has yet to fall in love with an alternative.

"When you're in a race, you're trying to beat the guy ahead of you," Sununu emphasized. "You'd think that they’d be more aggressive. I get it that they're trying to focus on the problems around the DOJ. And there are real problems there. That place needs an overhaul, no question."

He continued, "You're running against a guy with 37 indictments against him. You almost look like you're defending him at this point. Those are not–does not look like a serious candidate that's willing to take him on over the next six months to knock his poll fun numbers down and shoot you to the top. Either you want to run for president and beat the guy or you don't."

READ MORE: 'Embarrassing': Chris Sununu slams GOP and undecided voters' behavior during Trump Town Hall

The governor insists the GOP candidates' unwillingness to speak out against Trump is "a huge problem," adding, "And mostly it's a huge problem for the Republican Party. Once again, the former president is just a terrible message-bearer for the Republican Party, and it's scaring independents away."

Watch the Mediaite video below or at this link.

READ MORE: Gov. Chris Sununu offers contradictory remarks about Trump's 2024 presidential campaign

ABC News' full report is available at this link. The New York Times' report is here (subscription required). PBS' report is here.

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