Christie on “Bridgegate”: I knew nothing. Have I mentioned I knew nothing?

posted at 6:11 pm on January 8, 2014 by Allahpundit

Obama said the same thing about the IRS targeting tea partiers, of course. To which conservatives replied: That’s no excuse. Even if he didn’t order the targeting, bad behavior coordinated by multiple subordinates typically doesn’t happen unless they have reason to believe it’ll be tolerated up the chain. Usually, when they play dirty, they’re taking some sort of cue from their boss to do so, whether in broad ideological terms or direct marching orders. Does the same reasoning apply to Team Christie?

His defense, I take it, will be that it would have been madness for a sitting governor running for reelection to greenlight a tactic this petty when he was on his way to a landslide. It could only hurt him. (Of course, the same was true for Nixon and Watergate.) But that’s also the case for the staffers who ordered the bridge lanes closed — it could only hurt their boss to do so, and yet, for some unknown reason, they felt compelled to. Would they have dared to take a risk that huge without his approval, tacit or not?

Gov. Chris Christie has responded Wednesday afternoon to email exchanges made public earlier in the day linking a top aide to the George Washington Bridge lane closure scandal that’s been under investigation.

“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. One thing is clear: this type of behavior is unacceptable and I will not tolerate it because the people of New Jersey deserve better. This behavior is not representative of me or my Administration in any way, and people will be held responsible for their actions,” the governor said in a statement.

And so, as predicted, we’ll be moving next to the “Kelly resigns” phase of the scandal followed by the media feeding frenzy over whether Christie himself had a role in the lane closings. I thought it’d be over in a week, but Jersey Democrats are crowing about laws having been broken and Jersey papers are now running stories like this:

Emergency responders were delayed in attending to four medical situations – including one in which a 91-year-old woman lay unconscious – due to traffic gridlock caused by unannounced closures of access lanes to the George Washington Bridge, according to the head of the borough’s EMS department.

The woman later died, borough records show…

Although he did not say her death was directly caused by the delays, [EMS coordinator Paul] Favia noted that “paramedics were delayed due to heavy traffic on Fort Lee Road and had to meet the ambulance en-route to the hospital instead of on the scene.”

Joshua Green thinks the scandal’s a big deal because it damages Christie’s image as a “nice jerk” who fights for the little guy. That’s basically right, even though I doubt it’ll have legs if it can’t be proved that he endorsed the lane closings himself. The question with Christie is figuring out where his abrasiveness springs from. Is it from righteous indignation at how public-employee unions loot taxpayers or does he just get off on pushing people around? The two aren’t mutually exclusive, but the more evidence there is of the latter, the better Scott Walker looks as a righteously indignant yet mercifully soft-spoken alternative. A lot of undecided “somewhat conservative” voters in 2016 will be measuring how much good they expect President Christie to do against how aggravating, and exhausting, it would be to put up with him day after day for four years. This adds some weight to that second arm of the scale.

Update: Good point:

Second look at Rubio?


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Who cares…

OmahaConservative on January 8, 2014 at 7:42 PM

Wouldn’t it be great if there was a senior Republican statesman who started the call for Christie to step-down as RGA chair? Hmmm.

monalisa on January 8, 2014 at 7:42 PM

Sgt Schultz….I know NOTHING.

jaywemm on January 8, 2014 at 7:43 PM

This is not why I’m passing on Christie; in fact, it has zero bearing on why I’m passing on him. But it does fit with my opinion of him.

besser tot als rot on January 8, 2014 at 7:45 PM

Well his fundraising is still good.

terryannonline

Romney’s was pretty good too.

xblade on January 8, 2014 at 7:46 PM

This reminds me of Trent Lott’s fall from grace. I didn’t really care what he said – he was just being nice to an old friend. But, meh – if it’s going to take down an anti-liberty, statist, I’m okay with that.

besser tot als rot on January 8, 2014 at 7:46 PM

Romney’s was pretty good too.

xblade on January 8, 2014 at 7:46 PM

Not really. Comparatively, anyway.

besser tot als rot on January 8, 2014 at 7:47 PM

canopfor on January 8, 2014 at 7:36 PM

Good to see you friend..Hope your and yours are doing well..:)

Dire Straits on January 8, 2014 at 7:38 PM

Dire Straits:Everything is great, and..

…Great to see ya my friend,..I hope the holidays treated you and
your family well!

Grandson #2, had his tonsils out today, and I can breathe
easier!:)

canopfor on January 8, 2014 at 7:57 PM

Say it with me Crispy Creme:

I read about it in the papers this morning!

Not one conservative should raise a finger to defend this Obama-hugger.

Valkyriepundit on January 8, 2014 at 6:13 PM

You just mad me physically ill. I hadn’t thought of it that way but it’s the Obama-line. I read about it in the papers same as you. I did not realize someone died because of the fake delays. Unbelievably sad. Christie is pathetic.

BrideOfRove on January 8, 2014 at 7:58 PM

The question with Christie is figuring out where his abrasiveness springs from. Is it from righteous indignation at how public-employee unions loot taxpayers or does he just get off on pushing people around?

Mark Levin is tearing his Kremeness apart; along with a excellent rant on Steve LeTourettes, a nasty, conniving, wannabe kingmaker like Rove. It’s been since September since we first heard of this and only now is he getting around to the bottom of it. Levin also wondered if now he’s realizing that all his democrat “friends” are only to happy to turn on him with their long knives out for him, yet not even a RINO friend has come to his support. Sucks to be him, ever eager to shaft the TEA Partiers and conservatives, now karma is turning out to be a b!tch.

Mark’s also speculating on Boehner getting out and cashing in as lobbyist – supposed to be a 1 year hiatus after leaving office before registering as a lobbyist. If that’s so, look for Ryan to jockey for the SOH crown.

AH_C on January 8, 2014 at 7:58 PM

How could you tell?
You should see the traffic in Ft. Lee after a Jets or Giants game or any Sunday evening for that matter. Hour waits to cross in to NYC are normal.

diogenes on January 8, 2014 at 7:59 PM

This is not why I’m passing on Christie; in fact, it has zero bearing on why I’m passing on him. But it does fit with my opinion of him.

besser tot als rot on January 8, 2014 at 7:45 PM

This reminds me of Trent Lott’s fall from grace. I didn’t really care what he said – he was just being nice to an old friend. But, meh – if it’s going to take down an anti-liberty, statist, I’m okay with that.

besser tot als rot on January 8, 2014 at 7:46 PM

mega dittos

AH_C on January 8, 2014 at 8:00 PM

Check out Drudge! AP’s favorite fatboy is going to crash and burn.

JERSEY: Emails Tie Top Aide to Lane Closings, Despite Denials…
‘Time for some problems in Ft. Lee’…
Christie: ‘I was Misled’…
FLASHBACK: Ignores Driver Rage Over 4-Hour Traffic Delays…
Unconscious woman waiting for EMS delayed by bridge traffic, later died…
Mayor: ‘Don’t call me’..
.

Wigglesworth on January 8, 2014 at 8:03 PM

The top aide should resign or Christie should fire them..Either way Christie has to “cut bait” here..:)

Dire Straits on January 8, 2014 at 7:37 PM

Christe can only do that if he didn’t know about it otherwise that fired top aide will spill the beans.

Wigglesworth on January 8, 2014 at 8:06 PM

Grandson #2, had his tonsils out today, and I can breathe
easier!:)

canopfor on January 8, 2014 at 7:57 PM

I hear you..That is great news..:)

Dire Straits on January 8, 2014 at 8:08 PM

Christe can only do that if he didn’t know about it otherwise that fired top aide will spill the beans.

Wigglesworth on January 8, 2014 at 8:06 PM

True..But the aide knew this going in..So I think that will “dampen” the aide’s zeal to spill the beans..Or at least deterrent to spilling the beans..:)

Dire Straits on January 8, 2014 at 8:14 PM

@allahpundit so the right will pass on Christie over traffic, but take Walker who is being investigated for campaign violations?

That’s a bit unfair in terms of comparison. What the right is doing is criticizing Christie for abusing his power to harass ordinary citizens and make life harder for them. This is the same problem we have with Obama.

Neither the right nor the left takes campaign finance violations seriously except in episodes of the grossest malfeasance (such as taking money from countries like China or Russia). No one cares whether Walker forgot to dot an “i” or cross a “t” on a form.

Doomberg on January 8, 2014 at 8:15 PM

A lane change? On a bridge? This is newz?

Really?

I feel like I’ve entered Wayne’s World, Party On, Excellent! Sheesh.

Key West Reader on January 8, 2014 at 8:22 PM

Oof:

Lemon took note of a few scandals where Obama said he had no prior knowledge of a number of scandals his administration faced.

“He didn’t know about the NSA spying on allies, he didn’t know about the Obamacare website, he didn’t know that you wouldn’t be able to keep your doctor, so what’s the difference between Christie not knowing at the president not knowing?”

Wasserman-Schultz responded, “The difference is the issue that President Obama said he didn’t know about were policy issues, this is a scandal.” She dismissed the comparison, insisting that Christie has “created a culture in his office” where that type of behavior is permissible and he needs to be held to account for it.

http://www.mediaite.com/tv/don-lemon-grills-dnc-head-why-is-christie-suspicious-if-he-denies-involvement-but-not-obama/

can_con on January 8, 2014 at 8:22 PM

Wasserman-Schultz responded, “The difference is the issue that President Obama said he didn’t know about were policy issues, this is a scandal.” She dismissed the comparison, insisting that Christie has “created a culture in his office” where that type of behavior is permissible and he needs to be held to account for it.

Puleeze.

Key West Reader on January 8, 2014 at 8:41 PM

Too bad CRISTie went out of his way to stick it to conservatives and Tea Partiers all this time. Now none of us will come to his defense during this mess. And rest assured neither will the Democrat/media complex.

Doughboy on January 8, 2014 at 6:46 PM

The only people who will defend him are right-wing power worshippers.

FloatingRock on January 8, 2014 at 8:48 PM

Wouldn’t it be great if there was a senior Republican statesman who started the call for Christie to step-down as RGA chair? Hmmm.

monalisa on January 8, 2014 at 7:42 PM

Good point! If Crooked Christie is the leader of Republican governors then it is no longer possible for the tea party to avoid a 3rd party, the GOP is totally corrupt and irredeemable.

FloatingRock on January 8, 2014 at 8:55 PM

Looks like Cristie will have to settle for Secretary of Transportation in 2016.

HellCat on January 8, 2014 at 9:03 PM

I wouldn’t vote for anybody who would give a scumbag like Christie a position in his/her administration.

FloatingRock on January 8, 2014 at 9:19 PM

Bring in that floating fatman!

Kermit on January 8, 2014 at 9:34 PM

Grandson #2, had his tonsils out today, and I can breathe
easier!:)

canopfor on January 8, 2014 at 7:57 PM

I hear you..That is great news..:)

Dire Straits on January 8, 2014 at 8:08 PM

(…ok…now I found it!…now I don’t have to ask!)

KOOLAID2 on January 8, 2014 at 9:47 PM

HEY!!! IT WORKS FOR OBAMA & THE DEMOCRATS.

RdLake on January 8, 2014 at 11:02 PM

The Dems are tearing him apart on politico. I guess they’re not his friends anymore.

Tasha on January 8, 2014 at 11:10 PM

Meanwhile the left runs candidates who…
–make sure that unwanted infants who survive attempted abortions die in hospital storage closets.
–publicly call their fellow-soldiers murderers and rapists without any evidence.

…after they are elected, who…
–allow their ambassador to die alone with the heroes who tried to defend him.
–allow rogue states to continue to develop nuclear weapons and missile programs that threaten Israel, our allies and the American mainland.
–allow our Marines and soldiers to die in vain in Fallujah by failing to negotiate a strong draw-down in US forces.
–allow dozens of Mexicans to be killed with illegally obtained and trafficked weapons that we promoted.
–and many more.

Other than this being Christie’s first real test, it means nothing to me either way. But our bench is filled with promising administrators who failed their first test and never got another chance. Why should Christie be any different?

rwenger43 on January 8, 2014 at 11:16 PM

Jesus Christ, HotAir! Using the access of high political office to punish citizens who disagree with you is NOT a small issue. It’s a freaking huge deal, the WORST kind of corruption there is. It shuts down dissent completely. It ruins people’s lives. It emboldens others. And it is an absolute GATEWAY to corrosive rot from top to bottom in an administration. It is straight-up fascism. What the HELL is wrong with this place?!!!

Rational Thought on January 8, 2014 at 6:42 PM

This is not a defense of Christie, but he’s behaving like a democrat. The only thing politically he’s guilty of is not being a democrat and having the audacity of behaving like one.

If he had a “D” behind his name, I doubt the media would give a sh^t and they’d be helping to cover it up or minimize it.

It’s really hard to care anymore, especially with the NSA and IRS still running around unimpeded.

kim roy on January 9, 2014 at 12:01 AM

Also have to ask – what kind of Mickey Mouse operation relies on crossing bridges to save lives????? That’s just idiocy and asking for trouble. What if there was a stall or accident? As someone who lives around bridges that have adequate facilities on each side, that’s just bizarre. If it’s a small burb that can’t support that kind of facility, then no airlift access???

Mind boggling.

kim roy on January 9, 2014 at 12:08 AM

Karma’s a Boooootchhh.

I went to see him speak in 2012, he already thinks and acts like he’s some rock star, he was an hour late only spoke for a few disinterested minutes and couldn’t wait to get the heck outta there, and his two body guards whisked him out the back door….
SOUND FAMILIAR.

MontanaMmmm on June 5, 2013 at 8:56 PM

MontanaMmmm on January 9, 2014 at 1:57 AM

Good thing we found out early that he’s a ‘mean, petty, little jerk’. OK so maybe just mean and petty is right. If Rove is just finding out about this, why did GWB think he was so smart and on top of things and does this create an opening for Jeb!?

Kissmygrits on January 9, 2014 at 9:09 AM

There must be something in the water in NJ, since a previous governor, Corzine, made billions of client money disappear and the DOJ sounded like crickets.

Kissmygrits on January 9, 2014 at 9:13 AM

In other news: Whale beached in NJ.

Tsar of Earth on January 9, 2014 at 9:17 AM

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.

What an odd line…as it includes the statement ‘I am outraged and deeply saddened to learn that this completely inappropriate and unsanctioned conduct was made without my knowledge.’

verbaluce on January 9, 2014 at 9:33 AM

This is not a defense of Christie, but he’s behaving like a democrat.
kim roy on January 9, 2014 at 12:01 AM

Wow…that’s some spinning.
Is that your line for any Repub in a scandal?
Ha.

verbaluce on January 9, 2014 at 9:38 AM

Don’t blame him for knowing nothing. He has always held obama up as his hero and mentor. He is just acting on how he was trained.

Old Country Boy on January 9, 2014 at 9:44 AM

The media elites yawn at asking Hillary about Benghazi…or finding out what really happened.

The media elites jump at this Christie non-scandal….

nazo311 on January 9, 2014 at 10:08 AM

The test for bosses making the Sgt Schultz defense is whether or not they actually fire (not move or re-title) underlings. It’s still not full-proof but at least otherwise you know the boss is lying like Obama.

Chessplayer on January 9, 2014 at 10:14 AM

Didn’t know? Highly doubtful Mr. Christie. Besides, you are still responsible for your immediate staff. I’d like to support you as the beat down of some unions was a good thing. But. The repercussions from kissing up to Obambie is a ‘b’, huh?

TerryW on January 9, 2014 at 10:19 AM

Typical Northeastern state Republican, corrupt & seedy! Would not have been my choice in 2016 anyway and won’t be. Let the left shout and carry on about republican corruption but they hold the “gold standard” in the regard.

Boats48 on January 9, 2014 at 10:20 AM

What an odd line…as it includes the statement ‘I am outraged and deeply saddened to learn that this completely inappropriate and unsanctioned conduct was made without my knowledge.’

verbaluce on January 9, 2014 at 9:33 AM

Yeah, I know. Sounds just like Obama.

questionmark on January 9, 2014 at 10:21 AM

Yeah, I know. Sounds just like Obama.

questionmark on January 9, 2014 at 10:21 AM

Kim Roy is already trying that angle.

verbaluce on January 9, 2014 at 10:41 AM

Obama white.

stillings on January 9, 2014 at 10:44 AM

Kim Roy is already trying that angle.

verbaluce on January 9, 2014 at 10:41 AM

Don Lemon too.

questionmark on January 9, 2014 at 11:01 AM

It costs $12 or more to travel eastbound on the George Washington bridge thru the toll and heading east into CT.

End Tolls now. They hold up traffic every day.

http://voices.yahoo.com/close-tolls-mass-pike-after-horrendous-easter-3077675.html

This links to a blog post someone made when on a holiday weekend Duval Patricks unions couldn’t find anyone to work the tolls and there was only one open heading into Boston.

Nobody blamed Duval if anyone died that day who needed to drive on a road. In fact, negligence resulting in death is no different, in MA our governor hires “anyone who is someone’s relative” because it would be unfair to hire qualified people, and his health inspectors allowed hundreds of people to die or become impaired from cortisone shots manufactured in a lab in MA that had…like, mold growing on the walls and people got menningitis…right?

I think there is a lot of blame to go around!!! Let’s get blaming!
I am blaming Obama and Hilary for Benghazi, and Lois for the IRS scandal. Pile on friends!

Fleuries on January 9, 2014 at 9:08 PM

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