Chris Christie's surprise trip to Ukraine: criticism of Trump, meeting with Zelensky

The presidential candidate traveled to the European country and reaffirmed his commitment to continue military support in the war against Russia.

Less than 20 days before the debate that will pit the Republican presidential candidates against each other, Chris Christie opted for a quick trip to Ukraine. The former governor of New Jersey made a surprise appearance in the European country, where he met with Volodomir Zelensky, reaffirmed his support for U.S. military aid, and took the opportunity to chastise Donald Trump.

The Republican became the second GOP politician to visit Ukraine in the guise of a presidential candidate after Mike Pence did so in June. He visited Bucha and other cities affected by the war against Russia, which began in February 2022 and continues to this day.

Christie met with Zelensky, with whom he first shook hands for the cameras and then talked for about an hour about current events in Ukraine and the military aid it receives from the West.

“And it is very important that Mr. Christie began his visit to Ukraine with a visit to Bucha to see with his own eyes the threat to freedom and to everyone in the world posed by Russian aggression. I thanked all Americans, each and every one, for their vital support,” the European president wrote on his X account, formerly known as Twitter.

According to reports, they did not talk about the U.S. presidential race and took advantage of the time to discuss the future of the relationship between the two countries.

“The heroism Ukrainians have displayed in their fight against Russia. America has never moved forward by ignoring the rest of the world. We can’t start now,” the Republican said in a post responding to Zelensky’s post.

Criticism of Donald Trump

The former New Jersey governor spoke to The Washington Post from Ukraine and took the opportunity to take a shot at who is currently leading the polls in the Republican primary for president. Christie used irony to comment on the recent court indictments of Trump and said he hopes voters will prioritize candidates who have time to tackle “the really complicated problems that the next president will have to face,” including Ukraine, contrasting with those who spend their time trying to escape a jail sentence.