Frank Rich notes a significant turning point in the Bridgegate story:
Writing on the wall today: Murdoch reconsiders & dumps Christie. pic.twitter.com/9kMYkXHF9m— Frank Rich (@frankrichny) January 11, 2014
(The Post story cites a Rasmussen poll that says 54% of New Jerseyans think it's "at least somewhat likely" Christie knew about the George Washington Bridge lane closings, and 56% think he should resign if a connection is proven. But, since this is a Rasmussen poll, we're told that Christie still has a 60% approval rating in New Jersey, as opposed to President Obama's 52%.)
Capital New York noted on Thursday that the Post's coverage of the scandal was rather muted, in comparison with what was in the Daily News:
Now, I guess, the Post has tossed Christie under the bus.
However, over at Fox News, Roger Ailes is not quite ready to make that leap. Check out Fox Nation right now. Lead story: "DOJ Tells Schools To Implement Race-Based Punishments." Next four stories: "FBI Contacts Tea Party Groups Targeted By IRS"; "Obama Seized Control Of 'Second Highest Court' In The Nation"; Bill de Blasio Gets 'Occupy Wall Street' Activist As City Council Speaker"; "Senate Dems Block GOP Attempt To Restore Military Pensions". Only then do you see this:
Could that possibly be less dramatic?
Way, way down on the front page there's an actually picture of Christie, accompanied by a story titled "Christie's Bridge-Gate May Open 2016 For Others." But that's as negative as Fox Nation gets.
And FoxNews.com? Try to find Christie on the front page:
See that teeny, tiny type in the lower left, just below "LATEST NEWS," which is just below the picture of Obama? It says:
Docs show disarray over plan tied to Christie aideYes, that's what the "docs show," according to Fox -- not gratuitous political vengeance, but "disarray." And the scandal isn't tied to Christie, or directly the result of what multiple subordinates did as documented unambiguously by smoking-gun emails -- it's a "plan tied to Christie aide."
And under this, of course, is:
Christie crackdown ups scrutiny over Obama's scandal responseWhich is still, according to Fox, the only real takeaway from this story.
And notice what outranks Bridgegate. OK, sure -- I can understand making Ariel Sharon's death your lead story. I can even understand having the silly moose story as one of the leads -- giving readers some light entertainment along with the news is a time-honored news tradition.
But if a story about a coal company dumping toxic chemicals in drinking water gets more prominence than Bridgegate, you know Ailes really must want the Christie story buried.
So his crush on Christie endures.
Prediction: If Christie resigns, he will become a star political analyst on Fox News within a year, if not sooner, and all the way through 2016.