Mary Pat Christie, the wife of New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, has quit her job as a senior executive at a major hedge fund signaling that her husband is likely to make his 2016 president ambitions official, the FOX Business Network has learned.
Mary Pat Christie told officials at the New York-based Angelo Gordon & Co. earlier in the week that she would resign from the job she had held since 2012, as her husband moves closer to officially announcing his 2016 intentions, people with direct knowledge of the matter say.
Although Chris Christie has been traveling the country, including early primary states like New Hampshire, he has yet to make his intention official. The timing of such an announcement remains unclear.
When he does announce his intentions, Christie would join a crowded Republican field that includes Kentucky Senator Rand Paul, Florida Senator Marco Rubio and Texas Senator Ted Cruz. Like Christie, neither Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker nor former Florida Governor Jeb Bush have made their candidacy for the Republic nomination official, though both are likely to run.
Through spokesmen, Mary Pat Christie and Angelo Gordon declined comment to FOX Business. In a statement, a spokesman for Governor Chris Christie said: "Mrs. Christie has decided to take a hiatus from her work in the finance world to spend more time with her family and young children. She recently resigned her position as a Managing Director at Angelo Gordon."
As late as last week, Chris Christie said he and his wife hadn’t made up their minds about an expected presidential run. "You don't rush that decision…You do that in the time that it takes," he said on the Today show that aired April 16. "It is absolutely the truth that Mary Pat and I have not made this decision yet."
But people close the power couple say that Mary Pat told officials at Angelo Gordon that the reason for her resignation was that her husband was close to making his entry into the race official.
Having close ties to the financial system could be a detriment to any potential candidate given the anti-Wall Street mood of the country following the 2008 financial crisis, though Chris Christie is far from the only 2016 candidate with Wall Street baggage. Ted Cruz’s wife, Heidi Cruz, has taken an unpaid leave as a broker for Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS).
Late last year, Jeb Bush announced he would resign as an adviser to the big bank Barclays Capital (NYSE:BCS) as he took his initial steps to join the race. Bush had also been an adviser to Lehman Brothers, which went insolvent during the early stages of the financial crisis and sparked the broader meltdown.
After leaving her post as President Obama's Secretary of State, the likely Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton earned hundreds of thousands of dollars in speaking fees from major banks including Goldman Sachs, which received bailout money during the 2008 crash. Hillary Clinton’s former top adviser Cheryl D. Mills is also a board member of money management powerhouse BlackRock (NYSE:BLK), whose Chief Executive Laurence Fink is a prominent Wall Street Democrat and possible Treasury Secretary if Clinton is elected president in 2016.
Mills is widely expected to join Clinton’s 2016 campaign in the months ahead.
Mary Pat Christie’s departure from a lucrative job at Angelo Gordon is also seen as an indication that her husband’s legal issues are coming to an end. As New Jersey governor, Chris Christie faced a federal criminal investigation over the closure of lanes on the George Washington Bridge, a move that jammed up traffic in New Jersey towns run by his political opponents.
While senior aides to the governor may still face indictment, Christie is unlikely to be charged, people with knowledge of the matter say.