- The Washington Times - Monday, December 30, 2019

Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie has entered the impeachment fight with a new advocacy group that plans to spend tens of thousands of dollars on television and digital ads.

Right Direction America’s initial ad buy runs through January with spots slamming Congress for wasting its time on impeaching President Trump, said Phil Cox, a Republican strategist assisting Mr. Christie.

“Our core message is that it’s time for Congress to put impeachment aside and get back to work on behalf of the American people,” Mr. Cox said. “Our premise is that the country is clearly moving in the right direction: 7 million new jobs created, lowest unemployment in 50 years, and we can’t let partisanship get in the way of continued progress.”

The ads will tout the country’s economic successes, emphasize the country is headed in the right direction and urge Americans to engage with lawmakers who have responsibility for the impeachment proceedings, he said.

Right Direction America is targeting a handful of states including Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Colorado and Maine. Those states are all anticipated to feature hotly contested races up and down the ballot in 2020.

Right Direction America is aiming to counter substantial liberal spending and advocacy supporting the impeachment and removal of Mr. Trump from groups such as Need to Impeach, a multimillion-dollar effort started by billionaire Tom Steyer, who is also running for the Democratic presidential nomination.

Mr. Steyer’s group has targeted Republican senators running to keep their seats in Arizona, Colorado, Iowa and Maine.

The pro-impeachment campaign has been bolstered by a coalition of left-leaning groups that organized Nobody Is Above the Law rallies, which sought to mobilize 200,000 anti-Trump protesters across all 50 states ahead of the House’s votes this month on articles of impeachment. Activists leading the charge hailed from Acronym, Action Group Network, Center for American Progress Action Fund, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), People for the American Way, and MoveOn.

Despite the coordinated liberal opposition, the Right Direction America team says impeachment is a political loser for the left. Mr. Christie said on ABC’s “This Week” on Sunday that he believes the impeachment fight may turn three Democrat-controlled seats in New Jersey over to Republicans.

The former governor identified New Jersey’s 3rd and 7th congressional districts and New Jersey Rep. Jefferson Van Drew’s decision to switch from the Democratic Party to the Republican Party as three seats poised to change hands in 2020 partly because of voter anger over impeachment.

“If Republicans win three seats in New Jersey, it’s going to be a Republican [controlled] House,” Mr. Christie said.

• Ryan Lovelace can be reached at rlovelace@washingtontimes.com.

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