Apparently, the origin of the Traffic Study lie came from Port Authority Police officer and David Wildstein BFF Paul Nunziato. He claimed back on December 4th of 2013 that he had suggested a traffic study to David Wildstein, owing to traffic issues surrounding the George Washington Bridge at the time.
Well, today, Nunziato's lawyer claimed his client had only made that claim to appease Wildstein and others in Christie's inner circle. From The New York Times:
“Paul Nunziato had nothing to do with nor knowledge of the planning, implementation or execution” of the closing of the access lanes, the lawyer, Charles J. Sciarra, said in a statement offered in response to questions from The New York Times about his client’s role and his public comments. Mr. Nunziato, the statement said, first learned “that there was an obvious improper motive regarding this issue” when the committee released documents suggesting the action may have been politically motivated.(my bold)
In the four-page statement, Mr. Sciarra said his client had talked to Mr. Wildstein in the middle of 2012 about an unrelated traffic problem near the Fort Lee access lanes at that time. That problem arose after tolls were raised, when car-pooling motorists were stopping to pick up passengers to go through a discounted high-occupancy-vehicle lane, he said, citing published reports about the practice at the time.
Mr. Sciarra said in an email that Mr. Nunziato specifically told Mr. Baroni, before his appearance at the legislative committee, that the only suggestion Mr. Nunziato had ever made to Mr. Wildstein about the access lanes concerned those issues in 2012.
In the written statement, Mr. Sciarra said Mr. Nunziato’s comments grew out of loyalty to his political allies and that he believed that the lane closings stemmed from the dispute between the Port Authority’s New York and New Jersey factions.
“My client was trying to be supportive of people who were supportive of his union; he never intended to mislead,” Mr. Sciarra said in a brief interview.
Big h/t to Rachel Maddow, who moments ago reported this story on her show.
So tell us, Gov. Christie, was this "political shenanigans that morphed into a traffic study" or, more likely, a giant crock of shit that morphed into a criminal cover-up? Inquiring minds want to know.