Chris Christie stars in a national ad saying it was a mistake not to wear a mask in the White House

“This message is not for everyone. It is for all those people who refuse to wear a mask. You know I was in isolation in the ICU for seven days. I thought about how wrong it was to put my mask in the White House. to take off, ”says Christie. in the ad. “Today I’m thinking about how wrong it is to let wearing a mask split us up, especially since we now know that you are twice as likely to get Covid-19 if you don’t wear a mask. Because if you don’t does, right, we could all end up on the wrong side of history. Please wear a mask. “

A knowledgeable source told CNN that the ad is being paid for by philanthropist Ray Chambers’ family foundation. Chambers is a former New Jersey financier, worked for the United Nations for 10 years and is currently the Global Strategy Ambassador for the World Health Organization.

Over the summer and fall, Christie’s company, Christie 55 Solutions, lobbied for coronavirus relief on behalf of several New Jersey hospital systems, including Hackensack Meridian Health, according to lobbying revelations. Chambers is on the board of directors of the Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine. The school is a joint venture between Seton Hall University and Hackensack Meridian Health.

The ad will hit television for the next two weeks, with broadcasts on Fox News Channel, Newsmax and SiriusXM Radio.

Christie, who suffers from asthma, had herself hospitalized with Covid-19 in October, a few days after preparing President Donald Trump for his first presidential debate on the White House election.

A longtime supporter of Trump, Christie was among a group of senior campaign executives who were tested after the president’s positive diagnosis, which led to Trump being hospitalized at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.
Christie was also at the White House Rose Garden ceremony to announce Amy Coney Barrett’s nomination to the Supreme Court – an event that saw many guests not wearing masks or socially distancing themselves. The event was subsequently labeled a “superspreader” event by some public health experts, as a dozen attendees revealed they had contracted Covid-19 in the days following the ceremony.
The former New Jersey governor has previously said he regrets not wearing a mask, while writing in a Wall Street Journal op-ed that wearing a mask is not a “ partisan or cultural symbol. ”

He wrote that he dropped his guard while preparing for the debate with Trump, saying earlier this month that “no one was wearing masks.”

“I viewed the bubble of security around the president as a viral safe zone. I was wrong. There is no safe zone for this virus,” Christie wrote.

After Trump’s hospitalization, masks were not needed at campaign rallies and supporters were often seen packed together.

At all events at the White House in recent months – including an election party and more recent holiday parties – social distancing and wearing a mask have been part of guidelines, but those protocols have often not been adhered to.

This story has been updated with additional reporting.