Chris Christie knifes Kushner: Maybe family members who are hurting the president should think about leaving

Damn. What an awesome show “Game of Thrones” is.

Watch these two short clips and appreciate how clever Christie’s maneuvering is, remembering that Trump cronies who appear on the Sunday shows usually are performing for an audience of one — especially when they’re outside the administration and hoping for a White House position. Every TV interview is a job application, mindful that you-know-who seems to watch television news for like eight hours a day.

Kushner’s grudge against Christie has been well publicized but Christie still needs to be careful in attacking him, knowing that however irritated Trump might be by Javanka’s scandal baggage, they’re still family. He can’t get nasty or start prattling on about what a shady character Kushner is. He may even be wary of calling on Trump to fire them, as that would put pressure from an ally on POTUS to act against his daughter and son-in-law. Trump might not appreciate that. Solution: Put the onus on Javanka instead to step down for the good of the presidency and, by extension, the country. In one fell swoop, Christie (a) encourages the removal of the main stumbling block to his employment at the White House, (b) plays to Trump’s narcissism and sense of grievance by portraying Javanka’s prideful insistence on staying put as actively harming the president, and (c) shows Trump that he’s thinking of the president’s political well-being above all else, a key quality in a would-be advisor or Attorney General at a moment when POTUS feels he has no one around him he can trust.

The real master stroke, though, is praising Hope Hicks for her supposed selflessness in stepping down, an example he wants Jared and Ivanka to follow. Unless I missed a report somewhere, there’s zero evidence — none — that Hicks quit because she worried that her own baggage was hurting Trump. She resigned by all accounts because the White House is a terrible place to work, made more terrible by the “immense personal jeopardy” she’s in over Russiagate and the press’s prying into her personal life. And, contra Christie, virtually everyone in the inner circle who’s been quoted this week about her departure insists that it’s awful that she’s leaving. She’s one of the few trusted aides left; some reporters directly attributed Trump’s volatility this past week on things like guns and tariffs to a downturn in his mood caused by Hicks’s sudden decision to leave. That is to say, Hicks is doing the opposite of what Christie credits her for here, putting her own needs above the president’s. (And not for the first time.) But celebrating Hicks is another clever move by Christie, as it plays on Trump’s fatherly affection for her and presents her departure as an altruistic act done for his benefit. He’s planting a seed in POTUS’s mind: If Hope cared enough about my political welfare to resign, why don’t Jared and Ivanka?

Oh, and coincidentally, Christie thinks it’s time either for Jeff Sessions to quit in a dignified manner or for the president to drop the axe. I’m sure Trump can find a very loyal, momentarily unemployed former U.S. Attorney who was also a top campaign surrogate for him somewhere who might be willing to take the job if it opens up.

Can’t wait for the next episode of “Game of Thrones.” Sneak preview: A scheming jester allied with the House of Kushner but momentarily banished from the castle tries to assassinate the king’s chief counselor, clearing the way for his triumphant return!