Has anyone been following the "scandal" involving New Jersey Governor Chris Christie? I was not even aware of it, but it seems like it became a big news story overnight.
Christie ran for re-election last November and won handily. The mayor of Fort Lee, NJ did not endorse Christie for re-election. Fort Lee is located on the Hudson River and the George Washington Bridge spans the river into New York and into the Bronx. It's a heavily traveled bridge as you can imagine.
Allegedly, a member of Christie's staff ordered lanes on the bridge to be closed for four days. Christie faced accusations at the time that the lanes were blocked in retaliation over the mayor's refusal to endorse him for re-election.
Christie said he was "misled" and was not involved in the decision to close portions of the bridge.
That's really all we know at the moment with Christie scheduled to hold a press conference later in the morning.
This has turned into a national story for a number of reasons. First, at the moment Christie is considered to be the leading candidate for the Republican presidential nomination. Second, Christie's style has alienated both Democrats and Republicans.
The silence from the Republican camp has been deafening. Usually somebody from the party would have defended a fellow Republican, but most main-stream Republicans have maintained their distance.
Democrats, of course, are blasting Christie, but these critics are facing their own charges of hypocrisy. The Left thinks Christie should have known what this high-ranking aide was doing, but at the same time defending President Obama about his lack of awareness of the recent scandals plaguing his administration. And, to quote the president, "elections have consequences."
I think Christie should give the middle finger to his critics by going on national TV telling the world that he is "outraged" over this act, will promise to get to the bottom of it, fire nobody and, in a few weeks, label it as a "phony scandal."
Besides, "what difference...does it make?"
Update #1: At his press conference, Christie announced that he had fired his deputy chief of staff who was the person involved in the lane closures and had authored several emails which appear to link Christie to the closings.
Update #2: Christie received generally high marks from crisis management professionals on the way he handled the press conference...assuming nothing else comes out.