Trump's Absence Sparks Attack From Chris Christie, Ron DeSantis At 2nd GOP Primary Debate: 'We're Going To Call You Donald Duck'

The absence of former President Donald Trump from the second Republican primary debate on Wednesday stirred up criticism among his fellow GOP candidates.

What Happened: Former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis slammed Trump for skipping the Republican debate for the second time.

"Donald Trump, he hides behind the walls of his golf clubs, and won’t show up here to answer questions like all the rest of us are up here to answer," Christie said.

"Donald, I want to tell you, I know you're watching — you can't help yourself," Christie said, pointing his finger at the camera, referring to the debate broadcast.

"You keep doing that? Nobody up here's going to call you Donald Trump anymore, we're going to call you Donald Duck," Christie added.

See Also: Jimmy Carter’s Appearance At Plains Peanut Festival Takes Attendees By Surprise

DeSantis echoed the sentiment, stating, “Donald Trump is missing in action. He should be on this stage tonight. He owes it to you, to defend his record.”

What Happened: The second primary debate took place on Wednesday night at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in California. Seven Republican presidential hopefuls, all trailing behind Trump in the polls, met the Republican National Committee (RNC) criteria to participate in the debate.

These included DeSantis, conservative businessman Vivek Ramaswamy, former Vice President Mike Pence, former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley, South Carolina Senator Tim Scott, former New Jersey Governor Christie, and North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum.

Meanwhile, Trump, who is missing from the debate, is meeting the current and former union workers who are currently on strike against three major automakers — Ford, General Motors, and Stellantis — in Detroit.

Read Next: AOC Says McCarthy Can ‘Go Pound Sand’ As House Speaker Calls For Budget Deal Renegotiation With Biden: ‘Deal Is Done’

Market News and Data brought to you by Benzinga APIs
Posted In: NewsPoliticsTop StoriesGeneralChris ChristieDonald TrumpGOP DebateRepublican PartyRon DeSantis
Benzinga simplifies the market for smarter investing

Trade confidently with insights and alerts from analyst ratings, free reports and breaking news that affects the stocks you care about.

Join Now: Free!