8:25 AM PT: Christie: "I'm a very loyal guy. And I expect loyalty in return." Not sure that's the best line of the day, for him...
8:26 AM PT: Now back to self-congratulation: "I am not a focus-group tested or blow-dried candidate [...] but I am who I am, and I'm not a bully."8:28 AM PT:
8:29 AM PT: I said this earlier, but I'll say it again: Christie's main message here is that he wants people to think he's a victim too.
8:32 AM PT: More buck passing: "There's a kind of reputation out there that I'm a micromanager. I'm not. I delegate an enormous amount of authority to my staff." And: "There's no way that anyone would think that I would know about" everything going on in my administration in any time.
The thing is, these were senior aides, one of whom was a high school buddy of his. Nonetheless, Christie says: "I was told that this was a traffic study." But why was he so gullible to believe such obvious B.S.?
8:34 AM PT: Interesting: "I never saw this as political retribution because I didn't think he [the Fort Lee Mayor] did anything to us."
8:35 AM PT: "I never knew .... no one ever came to me."
8:37 AM PT: Christie says he hasn't had a lot of sleep over "the past two nights," so obviously been concerned even before the Bergen Record story. (Presumably, he became aware of it before publication because they would asked him for comment.)8:40 AM PT: And even if his strategy of positioning himself as a victim of the scandal "works" in terms of distancing him from responsibility, it also ultimately makes him look weak and impotent.
8:45 AM PT: Christie says he's more troubled at his staff lying to him than by the organizational culture that led them to believe it was okay to order the lane closures in the first place.
8:50 AM PT: Now Christie says it was a misstatement to say that he found out two nights ago.
8:51 AM PT: One question that hasn't been asked: If this was just a traffic study, and Christie thought nothing was amiss, why were the two people at the center of it—Bill Baroni and David Wildstein—relieved of their positions even before the emails were released?
9:02 AM PT: Christie is continuing to take questions: He's either trying to flood the zone and so that he can try to later say "I've already answered all your questions," or he just believes that his mouth is so golden that he can talk his way out of anything.
9:04 AM PT: Now Christie is saying that while he knew David Wildstein in high school, he wasn't a friend with him, and that he didn't even speak to him between 1977 and 2000. He also says that he knew that Bill Baroni had offered him a Port Authority job and that he approved hiring Wildstein.
9:06 AM PT: Haha: Fox just broke away from the press conference. Only so much of 2016 they can watch burn this early.
9:09 AM PT: Question: "Who initiated this whole thing?" Answer: "I don't know." Left unsaid: I really don't want to help try to figure out the answer to that.
9:10 AM PT: Again on Kelley: "I was lied to, and for that she was terminated."