Jeb Bush’s former and perhaps most prominent surrogate on the right, Chris Christie, said Friday that he was wrong not to put on a medical mask during Donald Trump’s press conference after the Virginia shooting.
The former New Jersey governor cited a common choice among doctors and emergency personnel: Masks are worn to protect against lung infections, which are suspected to have contributed to the death of one of the victims of the shooting on Wednesday.
“As you know, all of the people there were from Virginia, and I was the only person there from Virginia, and I said, ‘Oh, gosh, I’m going to wear a mask.’ And then, yeah, I think I got through it fine. I didn’t expect to die,” Mr. Christie told Good Morning America host George Stephanopoulos.
“But the idea that you believe that I would not take the utmost precautions to protect myself from disease, you know, is not true,” Mr. Christie said.
Before the ABC interview, Mr. Christie talked with reporters at the New Jersey Statehouse as part of a press conference on the state’s opioid epidemic.
Mr. Bush’s campaign Friday rejected Mr. Christie’s suggestion that Mr. Trump should have taken protective measures against pneumonia.
“He’s a private citizen,” Chris Nicholas, a campaign spokesman, said in an email. “Let’s be a little factual here. He’s not president. He doesn’t have government workers where he can wear protective gear.”
Mr. Bush has since cancelled multiple campaign events for the rest of the day and has been holed up in his hotel room in Washington DC.