Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) is apparently still smarting over the verbal beating he took from Chris Christie during a 2016 debate when the two were part of a crowded field seeking the Republican presidential nomination.
As Christie unveiled his 2024 presidential campaign on Tuesday, footage of him dismantling Rubio during a debate in New Hampshire before that state’s primary blew up on Twitter.
The former New Jersey governor mocked Rubio for a robotic performance relying on canned pre-written lines and memorized bits of stump speeches.
“There it is,” Christie said as Rubio repeated one of those very lines. “The memorized 25-second speech. There it is, everybody.”
That was more than seven years ago ― but Rubio was clearly not happy with the reminder.
The senator tweeted:
Rubio is correct in that Christie dropped out right after New Hampshire while he remained in the race for another month.
But Rubio had been gaining momentum in New Hampshire prior to the debate and had reportedly been hoping to finish at least second in the state.
He finished fifth, and he seemed to acknowledge at the time that Christie’s jabs ― and his own robotic replies ― played a role.
“I did not do well on Saturday night,” Rubio said after the primary defeat, referring to the debate in which Christie went on the offensive with moments such as this:
Twitter users mocked Rubio for even bringing it up: