Friday, January 31, 2014


This is a game-changer, I think:
The former Port Authority official who personally oversaw the lane closings on the George Washington Bridge in the scandal now swirling around Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey said on Friday that "evidence exists" the governor knew about the lane closings when they were happening.

In a letter released by his lawyer, the former official, David Wildstein, a high school friend of Mr. Christie's who was appointed with the governor's blessing at the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which controls the bridge, described the order to close the lanes as "the Christie administration's order" and said "evidence exists as well tying Mr. Christie to having knowledge of the lane closures, during the period when the lanes were closed, contrary to what the governor stated publicly in a two-hour press conference" three weeks ago.

"Mr. Wildstein contests the accuracy of various statements that the governor made about him, and he can prove the inaccuracy of some," the letter added....
Can't really top this as an explanation:

Assuming this evidence is produced, New Jersey's going to have a new governor soon, I'd say. But I think a Christie resignation will be the end of it for him -- only occasionally do we jail pols at Christie's level, at least around these parts (Eliot Spitzer escaped jail, as did Jon Corzine).

Even if he does do a few months in a minimum-security country-club pen, you know where he'll be come 2016? On Fox, doing commentary on the presidential race. If not, maybe doing a Morning Joe style show on Fox Business. Roger Ailes will hire him for something -- Ailes tried to get Christie into the 2012 race, and while Murdoch's New York Post bailed on Christie a while ago, and The Wall Street Journal has been dogging Christie on his various scandals since November (at least on its news pages), Fox has remained loyal:
Fox News has been one of the few places to mount any kind of sustained defense on his behalf. That defense has alternately come in the form of downplaying the scandal at first, invoking Benghazi as often as possible, blaming a "feminized atmosphere" for the governor's troubles, and championing Christie's alleged brand of "leadership" in response to the scandal.
Screen shot from that last link:

Disgrace of various kinds is rarely an impediment to a Fix gig -- see, e.g., Ollie North, Judith Miller, Mark Fuhrman, Dick Morris, etc., etc. Between his resignation as governor and election to the House, Fox employed Mark Sanford as a commentator.

So Christie will fit right in. And I think he'll be pretty good at Fox's brand of telegenic awfulness.


Danp said...

I'd like to think this would hurt the credibility of people like Romney and Giulliani who gushed at the way Christie handled the scandal as if corruption and abuse of power were merely incidental. But in the mind of a Republican Lance Armstrong won the Tour de France and is therefore a hero forever.

aimai said...

I'm not so sure, Steve. Because the bridge thing is not hte only scandal that is coming at Christie, not even the most important. Witholding Sandy funds is pretty damned serious and you know that has to be the tip of the iceberg. He could end up doing very serious time--more than a couple of years. It will be several years worth of subpoenas and testimony and trials--during which he will try to flip and trade information on other people--and then probably several more years in prison. By the time he gets out its going to be more like "Christie who?" He will also lose his law lisence. He could slim down and become telegenic, and he could stay fat and take rush limbaugh's place on the radio, or some combination of both. But its going to be a long time from now. There will be a new shiny object out there by then.

Joseph Nobles said...

Christie's team has seized on the letter, saying that it demonstrates he had no knowledge of the closures before they happened. Then they deny he knew during. But the letter doesn't really do that. There's no categorical statement of Christie not knowing beforehand. They should have just denied all the letter and left it be. Grabbing what you want and impeaching the rest is just sloppy.

Victor said...

I agree with aimai - he'll be kind of occupied for a long, long time.
The focus of the investigation will change from the bridge scandal, to include the Sandy funds - something that the Fed's won't take lightly - and then encompass the real estate deals that benefited Christie's brother.

Unknown said...

You are wrong as usual. Christie doesn't want a job on Faux. He wants power and respect and the only job big enough for him is the Presidency. If he wanted a job on Faux or Wall Street he could have played one and done in NJ.