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The Campaign Spot

Election-driven news and views . . . by Jim Geraghty.

What Happens if Christie Really Never Knew All Along?



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From the last Morning Jolt of the week:

What Happens if Christie Really Never Knew All Along?

New Jersey governor Chris Christie’s knowing about the bridge lane closures and then giving that “I had no idea” press conference would suggest he was either a nut job or an extremely convincing liar. Having said that, most of us on the Right would not accept a Democratic governor’s investigating himself or an “internal investigation” or an investigation by allies. So a lot of folks, fairly or not, will dismiss this investigation.

Howard Kurtz:

The internal report exonerating Chris Christie in the George Washington Bridge scandal was big enough news that the cable networks went live to the presser during or after President Obama talking about his meeting with Pope Francis.

. . . Let’s assume, for just a second, that the report was largely on target. It was headed by Randy Mastro, a former New York City deputy mayor, who knows that he will look like a dishonest hack if the federal and state investigations find that Christie was in fact involved in the lane closures.

But if Mastro’s central finding holds up — that Christie didn’t know of the bridge fiasco and wasn’t involved in any coverup — how does that change the national media clamor over the New Jersey governor?

What if all the speculation and breathless cable segments, especially on MSNBC, was wrong, and Christie’s denials (beginning at that marathon news conference) were truthful? Even on the charges of a Hurricane Sandy aid shakedown by Hoboken Mayor Dawn Zimmer, whose account was branded “demonstrably false” by the investigators?

Can you be truly “cleared” after being roughed up in this modern media age? And if he was, would Christie be owed an apology?

Kurtz concludes, “it may be that Christie was innocent in a legal sense but will still pay a huge political price. That may be unfair, but no one ever said presidential politics was fair.” Yes, but notice that certain scandals never stick to certain other figures.

As Brittany Cohan notices this morning, “Today Show talking about Bridgegate. Nothing about gun running, FBI raids, bribery, illegal campaign spending, etc. Because they’re Dems.”

If you’re not familiar with the gun running reference, it refers to this . . . 

[California State Sen. Leland] Yee discussed helping the [undercover FBI] agent get weapons worth $500,000 to $2.5 million, including shoulder fired automatic weapons and missiles, and took him through the entire process of getting them from a Muslim separatist group in the Philippines to the United States, according to the affidavit.

The New York Times greeted that news with a one paragraph summary on page A21 Wednesday with the headline: “California: State Senator Accused of Corruption.”


Tags: Chris Christie


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