As bad as the alleged scandals have gotten surrounding Gov. Chris Christie, nothing may inspire a visceral reaction quite like today's allegation on the cover of the New York Times. In a story with several shocking allegations, the newspaper alleges that Christie gave pieces of steel from the World Trade Center to New Jersey mayors who were atop a list of those whose endorsements he courted.
Most of the revelations in the story are regarding Christie's alleged use of the Port Authory of New York and New Jersey as a political tool.
The World Trade Center allegation is explained thusly: "Pieces of steel from the ruins of the World Trade Center ... were presented by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey to 20 carefully chosen New Jersey mayors who sat atop a list of 100 whose endorsements Gov. Chris Christie hoped to win."
The story does not cite a source for this allegation.
Secaucus and Hoboken get mentioned further down in the story: "Mr. Baroni, often accompanied by Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno, one of Mr. Christie’s top aides, delivered the World Trade Center steel to communities like Secaucus and Tenafly where the campaign sought endorsements. Mr. Baroni also frequently gave tours of the construction site, with guest lists that included Democrats whose support the governor was seeking. A tour last year on Aug. 23 included Mr. McDonough, and Dawn Zimmer, the Democratic mayor of Hoboken; the governor’s campaign wanted her to support Mr. Christie — or at least, not endorse his Democratic opponent."
(Apparently, the tour came just three days after Zimmer Tweeted on Aug. 20 that she was not endorsing either candidate and that she was "very glad" that Christie was the governor.)
The story also makes reference to the Bayonne Bridge as a project Christie endorsed to win powerful allies: "The agency’s spending served Mr. Christie well as he campaigned, all with an eye to building a broad coalition that would allow him to seek the Republican nomination for president. The governor’s push for projects like raising the roadbed of the Bayonne Bridge helped win endorsements from unions that had backed his opponent in 2009."
Stranger than fiction?
The story makes several bizarre revelations, such as this one about Christie ally David Wildstein:
"Mr. Wildstein ... quickly developed a reputation as the governor’s enforcer at the agency ... He seemed to appear from nowhere in officials’ doorways, staring until they invited him in."
And this: "The administration recommended dozens of people with close ties to the governor or his inner circle — often without relevant experience — for jobs at the agency. These hires included a gourmet food broker and longtime Republican donor, who was given a job as a financial analyst, and the co-author of Mr. Baroni’s self-help book, 'Fat Kid Got Fit: And So Can You!' — who received a part-time job as publications editor that paid more than $50,000 per year."
Read the story by clicking THIS LINK, and comment below.