Don't most of these political scandals often boil down to those simple questions?
With the WHEN component ... boiling down to a matter of historical "tense."
Take for instance, Christie's emphatic insistence of finding out about the Bridgegate Traffic scandal 'only after the fact' -- "after it was over" ...
washingtonpost.com -- Jan 9, 2014
Q: Can you understand why people would have a hard time believing that you didn't know about this thing? Considering your management style and the closeness of your staff, if you didn't know about it, what does that say about your ability to lead?
GOV. CHRISTIE: [...] kind of reputation out there of me being a micromanager. I'm not. [...]
Second, there's no way that anybody would think that I know about everything that's going on, not only in ever agency of government at all times, but also every independent authority that New Jersey either has on its own or by state -- both with New York, with Pennsylvania and with Delaware. So what I can tell you is if people find that hard to believe, I don't know what else to say except to tell them that I had no knowledge of this -- of the planning, the execution or anything about it -- and that I first found out about it after it was over.
And even then, what I was told was that it was a traffic study. And there was no evidence to the contrary until yesterday that was brought to my attention or anybody else's attention.
Take for instance number two, where the asserted historical evidence, places Chris Christie's knowledge of the Bridgegate Traffic scandal, squarely "during the period when the lanes were closed".
The existence of this "present tense" evidence, was communicated to the General Counsel of the NJ-NY Port Authority, by the lawyer of David Wildstein, and was also made public knowledge today.
It has also come to light that a person within the Christie administration communicated the Christie administration's order that certain lanes on the George Washington Bridge were to be closed, and 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 he gave immediately before Mr. Wildstein was scheduled to appear before the Transportation Committee. Mr. Wildstein contests the accuracy of various statements that the Governor made about him and he can prove the inaccuracy of some.
But Christie has assured us, he knew nothing about who ordered the shutdown or why, until January 8th of 2014. Someone obviously has their "evidence-timelines" out of kilter.
I suspect, it's the "Micromanager -- Not!" ... with the disconnected recollection of these events.
Take for instance number three, where the Christie's press office responds to the obvious temporal contradictions between the Governor's prior statements (of being the last to know) -- and today's assertions from Wildstein's lawyer (that Christie was 'in the know', as Bridgegate happened, in real time).
And Christie's press office response? ... to move the "temporal goal posts" -- hoping we'll forget all about Christie's prior statements of being in the dark, about it all -- until after the fact.
by John Schoonejongen, Asbury Park Press; usatoday.com -- Jan 31, 2014
Christie's press office distributed a statement saying the governor "had absolutely no prior knowledge of the lane closures."
"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,'' the statement said. "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."
The governor "had absolutely no prior knowledge of the lane closures."
No one has asserted that yet Governor, although it is curious to see that pre-emptive denial;
which also serves as a "non denial" of the "present tense knowledge of the lane closures" revealed by the Wildstein camp today.
Or in other words it boils down to, "What did the governor know, and WHEN did he know it?"
The Christie denials are shifting as fast as the new evidence of his knowledge is coming to light, or so it would seem -- to us ordinary observers of historical temporal events.
H/T to Chris Matthews for today raising, this subtle but remarkable contradiction of temporal events, by the Christie office, and their non-denial, denial of something that has not yet been accused -- the denial of the Governor's "prior knowledge" of the Bridgegate Traffic scandal events. ... Someone must have a guilty conscience, eh?
Just wait a few weeks, Christie will be denying that he even ran for a 2nd term (and busied his staff with seeking popular Democratic endorsements) while not running!