Letter: Christie knew about Bridge closings as they happened ex aide says

Dray Clark reports from Fort Lee
May 5, 2014 12:34:46 PM PDT
A letter released by the lawyer of a former Port Authority aide who was at the center of the Bridgegate scandal says Governor Christie knew about the lane closings of the Geroge Washington Bridge as they were happening.

David Wildstein describes the order to close the lanes as "the Christie administration's order" according to a letter released by his lawyer originally obtained by the New York Times. READ THE LETTER

Wildstein, a high school friend of Chrisities, was the govenor's appointee at the Port Authority until he resigned when this scandal broke. Wildstein has refused to testify. He took the 5th amendment numerous times in his one appearance before assembly investigators in Trenton earlier this month.

Wildstein was allegedly part of the plot to close lanes on the bridge as a form of political punishment, supposedly to punish the democratic mayor of Fort Lee for not endorsing Christie's re-election.

Part of the letter reads "Mr. Wildstein contests the accuracy of various statements that the governor made about him and he can prove the inaccuracy of some."

The letter goes on to say that "evidence exists as well tying Mr. Christie to having knowledge of the lane closures." That directly contradicts what Christie said back on January 9th.

The Christie Administration released a statement Friday evening saying, "Mr. Wildstein's lawyer confirms what the Governor has said all along - he had absolutely no prior knowledge of the lane closures before they happened and whatever Mr. Wildstein's motivations were for closing them to begin with. As the Governor said in a December 13th press conference, he only first learned lanes were closed when it was reported by the press and as he said in his January 9th press conference, had no indication that this was anything other than a traffic study until he read otherwise the morning of January 8th. The Governor denies Mr. Wildstein's lawyer's other assertions."

Christie was greeted with a scattering of boos and some cheers during a Super Bowl ceremony in New York City.

Christie didn't appear affected by the crowd's reaction during Saturday's ceremony in Times Square handing off the Super Bowl to next year's hosts in Glendale, Ariz.

The governor has been under fire after his top aides orchestrated traffic gridlock on the George Washington Bridge connecting New York and New Jersey as apparent political retribution.

Christie has denied knowledge of any plot.

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio also attended the handoff event.

Leaders of the New York-New Jersey Super Bowl organizing committee gave a platter to their Arizona counterparts.

Recently released emails show Deputy Chief of Staff Bridget Anne Kelly gave the go-ahead for lane closures approaching the George Washington Bridge that snarled traffic in the New Jersey community of Fort Lee, slowed emergency vehicles and delayed school buses the first week of classes.

It was in that capacity that she emailed David Wildstein, at the time Christie's No. 2 man at the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, the agency that operates the bridge, to say, "time to cause some traffic problems in Fort Lee."

"Got it," replied Wildstein, who ordered the lanes closed weeks later.

Meantime, Christie wished Howard Stern a happy birthday during a celebration in New York for the radio personality.

The governor appeared at the Hammerstein Ballroom to wish Stern a happy 60th birthday.

Stern says that Christie is a great governor and that he would be upset to see Christie get into political trouble.

Christie made way quickly for another New Jersey representative he said he knew the audience really wanted to see: Jon Bon Jovi.

The governor didn't take questions while heading into the event.

(Some information from the Associated Press) ---

New York Times Story.

Load Comments