Right now, the consensus is that there’s no one out there who can bridge that seemingly unbridgeable divide within the party. Anti-Trump Republicans have no shot at winning a Republican primary, Trumpian diehards have little chance of winning a general election, and those trying to seek a middle ground (like Nikki Haley and Marco Rubio) sound hopelessly inauthentic in pandering to Trump while attempting to chart an independent course.
But there’s one obvious contender who has gone overlooked. He became a Trump supporter before Trump took over the party but never joined the administration. He used a high-profile television perch to euphemize and excuse Trump’s worst excesses without endorsing them himself. And in the final days of the administration, he explicitly broke with Trump on his handling of the pandemic and his baseless claims of election fraud—without drawing the president’s ire.
Enter Chris Christie.