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Published:January 9th, 2014 08:30 EST
Is Chris Christie Telling the Truth When He Says His Staff Acted Alone in Closing the Lanes?

Is Chris Christie Telling the Truth When He Says His Staff Acted Alone in Closing the Lanes?

By John G. Kays


Are there two Chris Christies? A good Christie and bad Christie? It sure looks like it! And what about the New Jersey Governor`s deputy chief of staff, Bridget Anne Kelly? A Bergen Record piece characterizes her as talented, pleasant, and a good egg, which says to me she wouldn`t be capable of the Machiavellian politics of an insensitive email she wrote last August (time for some traffic problems in Fort Lee), unless there was somebody pulling her strings in the background. And who else could it be other than the governor himself, Chris Christie?


In a statement posted on his web site, Christie seems to pass the buck, deflecting the blame for closing the lanes leading to the George Washington Bridge (September 9) to his staff. What I`ve seen today for the first time is unacceptable. I am outraged and deeply saddened to learn that not only was I misled by a member of my staff, but this completely inappropriate and unsanctioned conduct was made without my knowledge. But why would Bridget Kelly take it upon herself to prod the Port Authority to close these lanes, which had the greatest effect on Fort Lee, New Jersey? 


Doesn`t it make more sense that someone was ordering her to do this dastardly deed? And, of course, if Chris Christie is lying, and if this can be proven, then he`s toast, both for a possible bid for the presidency as the Republican nominee, and even in maintaining his job as Governor of New Jersey. He could get impeached if they can show he lied! I`ll go so far as to say, his bid for the presidency is already off the tables. The information leak over the last two days makes his office look like it`s operated by the fun boys in The Sopranos!


This isn`t exactly an immature college prank; rather it demonstrates a callousness, a ruthlessness that be-smacks of a bygone era. Really, the first thing I thought of by way of an analogy, is Richard Nixon and Watergate, where he got professional henchmen to bug the Democratic Headquarters so he could spy on his enemies. Another connection which makes this analogy work, is that Nixon was re-elected by a landslide in 1972 (over George McGovern), just as Christie was overwhelmingly re-elected to the governor`s office, trouncing his Democratic opponent, Barbara Buono. It was unnecessary roughness in both cases; but both Republicans were insecure and paranoid!


The proof that this was no innocuous practical joke is aptly documented in a NorthJersey.com piece, EMS responses delayed by GWB lane closures in Fort Lee. Emergency vehicles were stymied in traffic in at least four major medical cases, that included a cardiac arrest, chest pains (in one case), and a car accident where four people were injured. A 91-year-old woman ultimately died of cardiac arrest, possibly because of the traffic delays (although that can`t be proven).


Christie will have a hard time weaseling (waddling) his way out of the jam he`s got himself in this time around! I may be premature in my judgment, but I believe his curtain call has already been ticketed, bidding him farewell. His behavior when working with President Obama during Hurricane Sandy in 2012 was beyond belief virtuous and showed a bi-partisan camaraderie unheard of in the current nip and tug of American politics. But does he have a darker side, concealed by a craftily constructed persona, an eye for an eye side, a bit of vicious rivalry towards his political opponents that was heretofore undetected by media radar?