That’s because the presumptive Republican nominee was raising money here for his former rival-turned-supporter Chris Christie.
“So you know Chris paid off his entire campaign debt tonight,” Trump said.
The billionaire businessman also had a little fun with the New Jersey governor. As usual, Trump was lamenting Nabisco’s decision to move jobs to Mexico, and he declared that he’s not eating Oreos anymore.
He then pointed to Christie and asked, “You’re not eating Oreos anymore, are you?”
“No more Oreos for either of us, Chris. Don’t feel bad,” Trump said, as the crowd awkwardly laughed.
Since endorsing Trump this spring, Christie has taken on a significant role in the campaign. He has appeared with the candidate at election night events and was recently announced as the chairman of Trump’s transition team.
Thursday night’s event, with a ticket price of $200, was held to retire Christie’s remaining campaign debt from his White House bid. At the end of March, the New Jersey governor had about $250,000 in debt, according to financial reports. Trump also appeared at a smaller, private fundraiser for the New Jersey Republican Party that had a higher ticket price of $25,000.
Trump got in on some of the New Jersey pride, which could be felt from the raucous audience. Though small, it was just as rowdy as any normal Trump rally.
“There’s nothing like New Jersey. Wiseguys, so many wiseguys,” Trump said, commenting on what some of the men in the crowd were shouting about Trump’s opponents. “Tell you what, if you can make it in New Jersey, you can do just about anything you want in life.”
He also threw in some tough-guy humor.
“We are not going to be the stupid country anymore. We are viewed as the stupid country,” he said. “We’re like a big, big sloppy bully that gets punched in the face and goes down. You ever see a bully get knocked out? It’s a terrible thing unless you’re doing the punching — then it’s OK.”
Trump spoke just hours after Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton told CNN he was not “qualified” to run for president. Referencing the attack, Trump pointed to some of the scandals that have dogged her campaign and argued that it’s an “absolute disgrace” that she’s allowed to run for president.
He also weighed in on the plane crash in the Mediterranean Sea, calling it a “terrible tragedy” and definitively saying it was an act of terror. He railed against Clinton for not using the term “radical Islamic terrorism.”
“She doesn’t want to use that term, she refuses to use that term,” he said. “I’m saying to myself, what just happened about 12 hours ago? A plane got blown out of the sky, and if anybody thinks it wasn’t blown out of the sky, you’re 100% wrong, folks.”
For his part, Christie defended his decision to back Trump, which he said “shocked” the world back in March. Christie was the first sitting governor and one of the first so-called establishment Republicans to endorse the candidate.
“I know that New Jersey, on June 7, on primary day, with our votes and our delegates, are going to be the people who put him officially over the top as the Republican nominee,” Christie said as he introduced Trump, with most of the New Jersey governor’s family on stage behind him.