Christie Administration Lashes Out at Ex-Friend Who Clogged the Bridge

By
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie delivers the State of the State Address on January 14, 2014 in the Assembly Chambers at the Statehouse in Trenton, New Jersey. In his speech Christie briefly addressed the ongoing George Washington Bridge lane closure scandal saying his administration "let down the people we are entrusted to serve" but also called for a longer school day for New Jersey students, and hinted that he will push for another round of pension reform.
Photo: Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images

In a Friday letter to the New York Times, a lawyer working for David Wildstein, the former Port Authority official who oversaw the George Washington Bridge revenge lane closings, said that Wildstein knew of evidence proving that Chris Christie lied to the press about when he learned about the closures. (Wildstein also described the closures as "the Christie administration's order.") If Wildstein can produce that evidence, then Christie is going to be in an incredible amount of trouble. The Christie administration's initial response to Wildstein was surprisingly civilized; a Saturday afternoon e-mail sent to "friends and allies" and obtained by Politico was much less so.

Titled "5 Things You Should Know About The Bombshell That's Not A Bombshell," the e-mail attacked the New York Times' editing of the story, reasserted Christie's claim that he didn't know about the bridge fiasco until well after it was over, and attacked Wildstein personally. The situation is especially sad because Christie and Wildstein's friendship dates back to high school, despite Christie's claims that they were not close. "In David Wildstein’s past, people and newspaper accounts have described him as 'tumultuous' and someone who 'made moves that were not productive,'" the e-mail says, before noting that a teenage Wildstein "sued over a local school board election" and "was publicly accused by his high-school social studies teacher of deceptive behavior."

According to Team Christie, Wildstein's more recent difficult behavior includes his "controversial tenure as Mayor of Livingston," his time as "an anonymous blogger known as Wally Edge," and his "strange habit of registering web addresses for other people's names without telling them." The note concludes with, "Bottom line — David Wildstein will do and say anything to save David Wildstein." Meanwhile, it's starting to seem as though Chris Christie will do and say anything to save Chris Christie.