Mar 27, 2024 - Politics & Policy

Chris Christie turns down running with No Labels

Chris Christie announces he is dropping out of the Republican presidential race at Searles School and Chapel. (

Chris Christie announces he is dropping out of the Republican presidential race at Searles School and Chapel. Photo: Danielle Parhizkaran/The Boston Globe via Getty Images

Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie has declined to run for president with the centrist political group No Labels, a spokesperson confirmed to Axios on Wednesday.

Why it matters: Christie is the latest high-profile lawmaker to turn down running with the group, as it continues to press on with plans to put forward a "unity ticket" in November.

  • "While I believe this is a conversation that needs to be had with the American people, I also believe that if there is not a pathway to win and if my candidacy in any way, shape or form would help Donald Trump become president again, then it is not the way forward," Christie said.

The big picture: Christie as recently as last week did not rule out running with No Labels, which has sparked concern from the two major parties that the third-party ticket could spoil the election.

  • "I appreciate the encouragement I've gotten to pursue a third party candidacy," Christie said.
  • "I believe we need a country that once again feels like everyone has a stake in what we're doing and leadership that strives to bring people together, instead of using anger to divide us."

Zoom in: Christie, a former 2024 GOP presidential candidate, had considered running with No Labels over the last several weeks, according to The Washington Post, which first reported on Christie's decision.

  • Christie's team, after commissioning polling in more than a dozen states, concluded that there was not a viable path forward for him, per the Post.
  • Other high-profile lawmakers who have turned down a No Labels ticket include former UN Ambassador Nikki Haley, Sen. Joe Manchin III (D-W. Va.) and former Maryland governor Larry Hogan (R).

State of play: No Labels said earlier this month that it intends to nominate a ticket by April but that it is willing to scrap its plans if unable to find a candidate with a viable path to victory.

  • Former U.S. Senator Joe Lieberman, who helped lead No Labels, died Wednesday afternoon at age 82, his family said in a statement.

What they're saying: "He was a beloved husband, father and grandfather. He was a senator and a statesman. He was the founding chairman and moral center of the No Labels movement," No Labels said in a statement on Wednesday.

  • "During his many years leading No Labels, we were all blessed by his wisdom and counsel as well as his kindness and humor."
  • "Senator Lieberman believed passionately in No Labels' work to unite our divided country. He believed in us and that helped all of us at No Labels believe in ourselves," the group added.

Go deeper: No Labels votes to move forward with 2024 third-party ticket

Go deeper