Monday, February 3, 2014

Monday Morning Joe Quarterbacking for Christie as Subpoenas Come Due

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Today the New Jersey Legislative Committee is expecting an influx of documents from the subpoenas of Christie's minions. But they probably won't release anything right away.

From New Jersey Star-Ledger
State Assemblyman John Wisniewski (D-Middlesex), who co-chairs the committee with state Sen. Loretta Weinberg (D-Bergen), said Saturday that the delivery of documents is likely to be a drawn-out process because nearly all of those targeted have asked for extensions.
"We have instructed counsel to make reasonable accommodations where appropriate," he said. "Some want a few extra days. Some want to deliver them on a rolling basis."
Once in hand, the documents will be cataloged by the Office of Legislative Services and checked for completeness, Weinberg said. They are not expected to be made public until the people who supplied the records testify before the committee.

Because of the "Abuse of Power" investigation, the Christie gang is in need of legal funds, and sent out a plea to use their campaign war chest to bail themselves out:

Gov. Chris Christie's re-election campaign is seeking permission to use the remaining funds -- as well as raise additional money -- to pay the legal bills arising from its cooperation with the state and federal investigations into the controversial George Washington Bridge lane closures in Fort Lee.
Without approval from the state Election Law Enforcement Commission, the Christie for Governor campaign will run out of money and be unable to comply with subpoenas to turn over documents sought by the U.S. Attorney and the joint legislative panel investigating the matter, according to a letter Thursday from the campaign's attorney, Mark Sheridan.

From Huffington Post:
Christina Genovese Renna left the governor's office Friday, the same day former Christie loyalist David Wildstein claimed to have evidence contradicting the governor's account of a lane closing operation, apparently to create traffic chaos as a political vendetta.
Renna reported to Deputy Chief of Staff Bridget Kelly, who apparently set the lane closings in motion with an email to Wildstein.

I'm going to enjoy it. I'm going to bathe in the tears of Joe Scarborough.
~ Sam Seder

On Monday's Morning Joe, most of the crew tried to bolster Christie. In the first segment, first Mike Barnacle then Joe Scarborough blamed the "Not Ready for Prime Time" staff for writing the Friday memo, apparently forgetting that many of them have resigned or were fired by Christie himself. Later Mika, Joe, and Nicole Wallace say that Christie never said he "didn't know" about the lane closures, when we have video of the two-hour presser at which Christie denied knowledge over and over until "after the fact." So really, Morning Joe brings up an interesting question - how could Christie NOT know the lanes were closed if he drove anywhere? Luckily there were journalists on the show who explained the actual facts to the Morning Joe crowd.


It's going to be what we in the news business call the "Drip Treatment." And it's going to be there every day, and extended into a period of weeks and into months. And his response over the weekend, if that is his staff at their best work, then he's done nationally.
~ Mike Barnacle

Let's speak the uncomfortable truth that he didn't have people around him who were ready for Prime Time before this happened, obviously. Why is it that he still has people around him that would let something like that go out? And office like that with a boss that people still don't have control over. Why doesn't he bring in a national Republican figure or somebody solid that can tell the kids to just sit in the back when they want to talk about social studies teachers.
. . . The Christie people are saying that Chris Christie knew, while the lanes were closed, that the lanes were closed. Of course. How could you not know that lanes were closed while the lanes were closed, when anybody that was driving, like myself, from New York to — in my case, Connecticut, or people going from New Jersey to New York or Connecticut, it’s impossible not to know while the lanes were closed that the lanes were closed.
~ Joe Scarborough

I was speaking to a source that knows the close internal workings of the Port Authority over the weekend and they describe Wildstein as the Governor's 'operative' at the Port Authority and also said that Wildstein wouldn't be shopping for immunity if he didn't have something . . . that's disparaging to the Governor.
The issues with the Chris Christie Press Conference, which he gave for two hours and everybody thought he did a great job, which he did, but all those statements might come back to haunt him now. Especially if Wildstein has an ax to grind, or Bridget Kelly has an ax to grind. The woman who left on Friday, Christina Renna, is also the one who reported directly to Bridget Kelly; there's an email going on with them where Mayor Sokolich (of Fort Lee) actually called in and Renna sent an email on to Bridget Kelly telling her the fact that the Mayor called. So there's a lot more to come.
~ Thomas Roberts on Morning Joe

A lot of Republicans, especially those sympathetic to Gov. Christie and those among us who want to allow him a presumption of innocence feel like Friday night's story may have been overblown.
~ Nicole Wallace on Morning Joe


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