BREAKING: Christie apologizes for Bridgegate, says he fired Bridget Kelly
Jan 09, 2014 | 2361 views | 1 1 comments | 38 38 recommendations | email to a friend | print
HUDSON COUNTY -- In a press conference at 11 a.m. on Thursday, Gov. Chris Christie apologized to the people of New Jersey for inappropriate actions related to lane closures near the George Washington Bridge in September, in what is being referred to as the "Bridgegate" scandal (see related links below).

Christie also said he has terminated the employment of a senior staffer in his office, Bridget Kelly, over her behavior, which was revealed yesterday after newspapers got hold of emails and texts related to the scandal.

"There's no justification for that behavior. There's no justification for every lying," he said.

Christie said that he had specifically talked to everyone in his office to determine if anyone else was involved in an inappropriate decision to close the lanes leading to the George Washington Bridge in September, causing a traffic jam in Fort Lee that made it difficult for public safety vehicles to get through. Texts and emails revealed yesterday made it seem as though the decision was retribution for the Fort Lee mayor's failure to endorse Christie in the November governor's race.

"I am heartbroken," over Kelly's betrayal of trust to him, Christie said.

He also said, "I would never have come out here and made a joke about these lane closures" if he'd had an inkling of what went on.

Christie also said he instructed Bill Stepien, his former campaign manager, to cease his consulting with the state's Republican party and not to put his name in to be a local party chairman. Stepien also apparently wrote emails or texts as part of the inappropriate conversations.

Christie concluded that despite naming Stepien and Kelly, he knows he is responsible for what goes on in his office.

"I was blindsided yesterday morning" when the news came out, he said. He said he had just finished his workout when his staff called him to inform him of the Bergen Record story.

Christie said there are ongoing investigations into the matter. He also said he will personally apologize today to the mayor of Fort Lee.

"This is not the tone that I've set over the last four years," he said. "It's not the environment I've worked so hard to achieve." He said he has encouraged Democrats and Republicans to work together. "And so I'm extraordinarily disappointed by this," he said. "But this is the exception. It's not the rule."

He reiterated that he had no knowledge of the actions, and was "stunned by the abject stupidity of what was done here...this was handled in a callous and indifferent way and is not the way this administration has conducted itself."

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downtownobserver
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January 09, 2014
I cannot take him at his word. I believe that the Gov knew of the lane closure. Don't tell us that you don't know what your 65,000 employees do and say. What BS. This was your deputy chief of staff and close adviser.

In any event the Gov's culture of bullying has manifest itself in the actions of his staff. What similar spiteful actions have been done?

Presidential material....I don't think so.