The editors of the New Jersey Star-Ledger are fed up with Governor's Chris Christie's political manipulations of New Jersey mayors - doling out rewards or punishments based on their endorsements or compliance with his preferences. In Chris Christie playing favorites among NJ mayors is disgraceful: Editorial they join in with the editors of Asbury Park Press who wrote a similar denouncement, yesterday, in 'Friend or Foe, Christie knew, and emulated Nixon's enemies list, in punishments' says APP editorial.
Fort Lee Mayor Mark Sokolich's loyalties to Gov. Chris Christie were closely tracked by the Christie administration. When he didn't endorse the governor for re-election, his town was treated to gridlock with the now infamous George Washington Bridge lane closures.
New Jersey taxpayers should be disgusted by news that their hometown fortunes — how much of their state taxes are returned for, say, school aid or hurricane damage — don’t depend on factors like population or genuine need, but rather how well their mayor kisses the governor’s ring.
Documents revealed in the Bridgegate investigation so far reveal that the Governor's staff were instructed on how they should treat each mayor according to an evaluation of how cooperative he and she was with Christie's goals. His executive team coordinated and enforced this system with complicated sets of matrices, war-room wall charts, profiles, and other artifacts that make clear the rigor and intensity of this ongoing standard operating procedure.
The description of the Christie campaign’s mayor-by-mayor tracking system — reported by The Star-Ledger’s Christopher Baxter this week — undermines the governor’s public claims that he didn’t know whether Fort Lee Mayor Mark Sokolich had planned to endorse his re-election or not. In fact, campaign staffers closely tracked the loyalties of more than 100 mayors, Sokolich among them.
In a pattern reminding us of the media's response to Nixon's Watergate scandal, editorial writers at major newspapers remained neutral, or skeptical of allegations, at first, however the steady "drip,-drip,-drip" of revelations made denials increasingly implausible. One-by-one, major newspaper editors pulled the plug on their support for Richard Nixon, and then one-by-one, the calls for his resignation mounted.
Is it possible that the disgust articulated by the Star-Ledger today, and Asbury Park Press, yesterday, will escalate into widespread calls for Governor Christie to resign, rather than tot put New Jersey residents through a prolonged daily ordeal of revelations, further allegations, and more denials for the next three years of his term?
Just as a reference point, the Virginia U.S. Attorney's just indicted former Governor McConnell, and his wife, 4 years after the investigations started, and we still do not know when the trails will start. This case was simple by comparison and the tangible evidence, including the gifts, the receipts, and the givers, straightforward, compared to the Christie cases. Using it as a reference we might not see a trail in Governor Christie's case until 2019 to 2020, long after Christie's term is up.
Is it possible that newspaper editors and citizens may conclude that Christie should resign prior to then so he can spend the next five years defending himself, and let the Governor's office and citizens of New Jersey get on with the business of the people? Many other issues demand a full time Governor and political system.
How long will it be before journalist, editors, pundits, and citizens of New Jersey decide to let U.S. Attorney Fishman and the other investigators take as long as they need to for the criminal invesigations, but we already know enough of Christie's actions so far, do know they are unsavory, and not befitting the Governor's Office, and with his commitments to fund raising for the Republican Governor's Association, Christie does not appear to have the time or character qualifications to remain as Governor. He should resign for the benefit of the people of New Jersey and let the state get on with the proper focus on the people's business, not himself.
At least one member of the Port Authority Board of Commissioners received a call from the U.S. attorney's office in Newark today, said a source familiar with the matter.
"They want to talk about the bridge," said the source, referring to the GWB, where the closing of two out of three local access lanes snarled traffic in Fort Lee, touching off the so-called Bridgegate scandal.
Rechler took over as acting chairman following the resignation of David Samson on March 28. Samson stepped down following a report by The New York Times that federal prosecutors had subpoenaed information related to potential conflicts of interests stemming contracts awarded to construction companies represented by Samson's law firm.
A spokesperson for acting chairmen, Commissioner Scott Rechler, did not return the Star-Ledger's phone calls.
1:50 PM PT: a2nite is calling our attention to the War rooms and LIGA Here's one link I just found.
MARCH 3, 2014
THERE WAS a war room inside the offices of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. In that room, some of Governor Christie's top aides at the Port Authority planned an assault on commuters. They won that battle. They will lose the war.
As reported Sunday by Staff Writer Shawn Boburg, Port Authority Deputy Executive Director Bill Baroni and his aide David Wildstein set up a so-called war room inside the Port Authority where few were allowed access. With the assistance of some New York-appointed Port Authority officials, these individuals concocted a plan to initially propose raising tolls by $6 by 2014. The hike was deliberately obscene. The plan called for the governors of New Jersey and New York to step in at the last minute like white knights and demand a reduction.
And that is what happened in 2011. The approved $4.50 toll increase over four years was pitched as a compromise. It was. Transparency, good public policy and the people's trust were all compromised.
- See more at: http://www.northjersey.com/...