A former Chris Christie aide’s text message claims the New Jersey governor “flat out lied” when talking to reporters about Bridgegate. In particular, Christie “flat out lied” about whether or not top-level aides had any knowledge about the plot to block traffic on the George Washington Bridge.
The text message in question certainly seems to harm the integrity of Chris Christie who steadfastly denied his office had anything directly to do with that fiasco. It showed up in court documents and was sent by Christina Renna.
The Christie aide appeared to be genuinely shocked that the governor was making the claims he did. Another text message in the court documents, according to the New York Times, pointed out that if some emails came to light, it could be very bad for Chris Christie and his administration.
The court filings show Renna sent the text messages while the governor was talking to reporters at a press conference. During that conference, Christie said he was completely unaware of the plot to shut down a few lanes of traffic.
Those shutdown lanes caused traffic jams for several days during the beginning of the school year. Those lanes being shut down also made it extremely difficult for commuters to get to work.
It turns out it wasn’t a mistake, as the administration first claimed, but rather a plan allegedly hatched by several top aides. During the question and answer period, the governor claimed he had also been assured by everyone on his staff they had no knowledge of the issue.
He went on to say he had even talked to members of his campaign. He talked to Bill Stepien, who was his reelection campaign chair, precisely because there had been talk that the lanes had been shut down due to political issues. “Oh, yeah, I’ve spoken to Mr. Stepien, who’s the person in charge of the campaign, and he has assured me the same thing,” Mr. Christie said during the news conference.
“He just flat out lied about senior staff and Stepien not being involved,” Renna sent in the text right after he made that comment, according to NJ.com. Renna was sending those text messages to Peter Sheridan, who worked for the campaign.
In other words, Renna was talking to someone who worked under Sepien, and it appears both aides know the governor flat out lied when he was talking about staff members’ involvement in Bridgegate. The court filings show Sheridan didn’t argue with Renna about what Christie was doing but seemed to be less nervous than Renna.
Sheridan responded that Chris Christie was “doing fine” and “holding his own up there.” Renna then responded, “yes but he (Christie) just lied.” On Wednesday morning, the court filings came to light, and the New Jersey governor and Donald Trump surrogate continued to stick to his story.
“I absolutely dispute it. It’s ridiculous. It’s nothing new. There’s nothing new to talk about.” Christie said after appearing on a morning sports talk radio show.
It doesn’t come as much of a surprise that there are some aides claiming he “flat out lied” when talking about the bridge issue.
There were plenty of people watching the scandal unfold who wondered how the governor could think no one on his staff knew about the issue. At the same time, Christie has managed to avoid being directly tied to Bridgegate.
If Renna’s comments can ever be proved or corroborated, it would indeed be bad news for Christie, the man who seems to want a job in the White House should Trump win the election this fall. It’s hard to see Chris Christie surviving allegations from an aide that he “flat out lied” if anyone else trustworthy is willing to point the finger towards him.
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