Chris Christie’s Future Likely Affected By Bridgegate Scandal | Rachel Maddow | MSNBC
Chris Christie’s Future Likely Affected By Bridgegate Scandal | Rachel Maddow | MSNBC Chris Christie’s Future Likely Affected By Bridgegate Scandal | Rachel Maddow | MSNBCWe’Re going to start with something tonight that is a little bit off the beaten path, but there is a good reason for it. Trust me, it starts with former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie. You may have noticed has become something odd figure in politics. These days in Republican politics in this era of the Trump presidency in 2012, but he decided not to run in 2012, he did make a go for the Republican Presidential nomination in 2016. Nobody would, he got only 2 % of the vote in Iowa in 2016. He came in sixth place in New Hampshire, which is where he’s been really giving. It is all, but just became clear, pretty fast that there was no Republican what he had to offer and then interesting decision. Chris Christie, as he dropped out of the race again early on endorsed Donald Trump, and that was at a time when no prominent Republicans were fixing their car to that particular horse. I mean at the time Chris Christie plighted his Troth with Donald Trump it he was alone. I mean the closest Trump had other high-profile endorsement at that time was failed. 2008 presidential candidate Rudy Giuliani, admitting publicly that yes, okay, he defeated he’s sometimes spoke to Trump by phone. Even Giuliani was not willing to endorse Akai at that point in 2016 and it was an unusual decision and everybody assumed that maybe some of the political logic there was that Christie was gunning for theater, General, dick or maybe even the vice president or some other huge Role in the Trump Administration, in the unlikely event that Donald Trump would win the presidency, the Trump transition team, but only as long as they thought he wouldn’t they thought they wouldn’t actually need it. They put Chris Christie in charge of the Trump transition in May 2016. Fully 6 months before the election happen, once Trump actually won the election and really they transition team they took away from they threw all his work out. The window and Steve Bannon Jared Kushner anecdote from the Trump campaign literally threw away, threw in the trash. Can all the materials and all the planning that Christy had done to plan for the transition of power and setting up a new Administration even doing the work him and got rid of all of his work? Chris Christie explicitly warned us against Mike Flynn being National Security. Advisor Christy says he wouldn’t let General Flynn into the White House let alone give him a job. Will neener neener will show that Chrissy will swear in like Flynn? Is National Security adviser and himself early Brave endorsements out, thanks for all your work that we reveled in telling the press that we threw out thanks for everything by Chris Christie, does have a TV contract? Word about Donald Trump in some other settings he is occasionally mildly critical of the administration, but mostly he is just unattached top tier of national serious Republican politics.. But if there is one thing that Plains, why? That is why that work out that way, it may be brisket, and you probably remember the basics of the story right. Some of the first newspaper ink that was devoted to Bridgegate came in the form of a local traffic. Call him in the Bergen Record in New Jersey was September. 13Th 2013. The local columnist wrote off a weird and unusually terrible week for commuters, who were trying to drive from New Jersey to New York. This is the photo that ran with the story and you can see if you look closely. It’S not like he’s a cop or anybody official he’s just a dude and khakis, and a blue shirt standing to the side of his own car, trying to figure out what it was that had completely stopped traffic getting onto the nation’s most holy traffic Bridge. The George Washington Bridge from the New Jersey town of Fort Lee toward New York City, the traffic was so you could park and get out of your card. It was completely stopped not moving at all hours and hours. That call him about the traffic jam on the bridge in Fort Lee that ran on a Friday, but actually the traffic had been like that all week long and it started on that Monday. It went on day after day that week and not only stop traffic onto the bridge traffic jam for traffic getting out of the fridge and gridlocked all of the surface streets in the town of Fort Lee. New Jersey, in that whole town, with hundreds of cars, backed up onto that town street, all of them for hours with nowhere to go not just during rush hour but hours Beyond coming and going, and it was more than just a nuisance, work, work. Ems response times ballooned, as a result of that weird unusual and unnatural traffic and paramedic delayed in reaching an unconscious 91 year old woman that woman later died of cardiac arrest at the hospital emergency responders Fort Lee New Jersey traffic. That was a result of the backup at the bridge among the people caught in the police, who were assigned to look for a four year old boy missing on a Monday. That Monday was also the first day of school that year and so on day. One of the school year school buses were late, getting thousands of kids to school for their first day of school, and that was and then it went on like that all week, with no relief whatsoever. Now this might have been an unfortunate story about an inexplicable unusually bad traffic jam. Were it not for the fact that it became clear pretty quickly that it was man-made and apparently deliberately man-made. The Port Authority, which runs the bridge, put out a statement saying that the whole mess did not happen organically. It was the result of a traffic study official see who would be in a position to know if that were true said they weren’t buying that they don’t think that’s what actually happened. I asked for an explanation, but they haven’t responded. I thought we had a good relationship now, I’m beginning to wonder. If there’s something I did wrong, am I being sent some sort of message, the Bergen Record and other New Jersey what’s later of evidence showing that, in fact, this look very much like the mayor of Fort Lee, New Jersey was being sent some kind of message that Evidence included an email Governor, Christie’s, Deputy Chief of Staff on August 13th, 2013 about a month before the bridge closures. That email was sent by Bridget Kelly to one of Governor Chris Christie’s top guys at the Port Authority, who initially issued that bogus explanation. That some sort of traffic study was to blame for the gridlock, while seems the same Christie appointee. Who gave the orders to close those Lanes onto that bridge which caused the gridlock? We later learned, given Specific Instructions to bridge employees, not to warn the local police or the town of Fort Lee? What was about to hit them in terms of this traffic Armageddon, but that email sent to him by Christie’s Deputy Chief of Staff play on August 13th about a month before the lane closures? It said quote time for some traffic problems in Fort Lee responded. It about three weeks later being called one of the Port Authorities directors to inform him that that coming Monday, these lane closures would take place on the bridge that guy from The Port Authority said. That was a very unusual. Please, like the George Washington Bridge, those things are typically planned years in advance. You wouldn’t get notified hey. This is going to happen. On Monday, the George Washington Bridge manager says Wild Thing. We police received information and response turn out to be spot-on because, as designed when the traffic Lanes on to that bridge got shut down, everything in Fort Lee New Jersey went straight to hack, I text by email. He was contacting Bill brownie with David wildstein boss at the Port Authority. He was another Chris Christie appointee. The mayor of Fort Lee and other officials were complaining about really serious stuff people with broken heart attack. I mean email show that the mayor and others were purposely met with quotes. Radio silence David wildstein forwarded a complaint from the Fort Lee mayor to Bridget and Kelly over Chris Christie’s, the mayor said he was frustrated that school buses couldn’t get kids to their first day of school Bridget Kelly’s response quote. Is it wrong that I’m smiling while stains response? No, no, it’s not. I feel badly about the kids. I guess David wildstein response quote. They are the children of Voters, meaning Barber and I are privately. All these messages were being sent back. It sent back and forth about about causing problems in that town of Fort Lee about greeting their panics cries for help with radio silence. Are these Christie Stoppers in a point in the pain they were causing the children of democratic voters 2 months later? In November of that year, Bill Baroni Christy’s top appointee at the Port Authority, David wildstein spot. That is a bit of traffic study, even though that was a made-up cover story throughout all of this and his top spokesman as traffic jams, the governor himself, even joked about it. I work the cones. Actually, I’m not unbeknownst everybody. I was actually the guy out there. I wasn’t overalls and a hat, so I wasn’t it King, the cones out that you really are not serious. With that question Port Authority week after David Authority, Christie’s other even more senior appointee, their bill Baroni, he also quit and then those emails came out, including the one calling for some traffic problems in Fort Lee, at which point Governor Christie stop joking around about it and Got serious this morning I terminated the employment of Bridget Kelly effective immediately. I terminated her employment because she lied to me. I’Ve not had a conversation with Bridget Kelly since the email came out, and so she was not given the opportunity to explain to me why she hi cuz. It was so obvious that she had and I’m quite frankly, not interested, I’m not interested in the explanation. But you know she sure, as heck must have concocted this whole thing herself.. What was the governor’s staff and appointees shutting down access to this huge Bridge? The bridge busiest bridge in the country purposely gridlocking a whole town for days and days and days just to punish the Fort Lee mayor offer his grave political crime of refusing to endorse Chris Christie in his re-election effort ever meeting their sokolich. Until I saw his picture last night on television, I wouldn’t have been able to pick him out of a lineup, but the governor might not have been able to pick the Fort Lee mayor out of the lineup 15 was not just trying to get Christy to win. That was basically a foregone conclusion in New Jersey politics. At that time they were trying to run up the score in the election Democratic support as possible for a national presidential mayors of New Jersey towns, particularly Democratic Mayors, to publicly brother support behind Chris Christie. Bridge lanes shut down their sokolich said that a member of the governor’s office of intergovernmental Affairs would repeatedly meet with him and tell him about other Democrats. Chris Christie staying insisting that anything from the mayor complaining about was happening to his town. Any complaints to be greeted with quote radio silence, but beyond that who, at the mayor’s expense. A few days after the closures, David wildstein sent a press report about the traffic jam to Bill stepien, who is Chris Christie’s campaign manager at the time and read it and wrote back quote: it’s fine, the mayor’s an idiot while staying later email Bill step in that Quote it will be a tough November for this little Serbian and apparent reference to measure sokolich. Even though he’s not Serbian he’s of Croatian descent mind getting those one screwed-up just days after the Bridge Lane shutdown, Christie, spokesman about it, we got more evidence of how they felt about this whole thing. David wildstein texted Bill, Baroni, hey The Wall Street Journal call my cell phone bill Baroni respond spokesman of emails and texts that were eventually uncovered in the Scandal. We learned that the governor’s spokesman, Michael drewniak for governor campaign manager, another direct date of the governor Matt Lauer’s. His director of Department of relations, Christina Renna, the governors and chief of staff, Italy thereafter, and yet here was Christian in December. There was nobody on my staff who had any knowledge of this issue until after the issue was already done months later, Governor Christie’s office. Would commission their own million dollar internal reports to investigate the Bridgegate batter get to the bottom of it? A very similar through-line to the governor’s press conference from back in January? I said December but January the one where he said that he had fired Bridget Kelly and that he was not interested in any of her explanations. Ocean by Christie’s office was mostly greeted as a laughing stock in part, because it’s so emphatically clear, Governor Christie of everything and anything that you could have used it to recommend him for sainthood to the Vatican, because the report, I kid you not went out of its Way to bring to blame the bridge Scandal without explanation on reported difficulties in Bridget Kelly’s love life, which I’m sure these guys enjoy. detailing in that report. But the relevance to the governor’s Scandal involving the bridge was quite hard to see. I asked whether Christina about the lane closures in advance investigation with a federal criminal investigation brought by the US attorney in New Jersey, that investigation did not charge, but it wasn’t exactly kind of him. David Walston play guilty. He agreed to testify against Bill Baroni and Bridget Kelly veroni and Kelly were indicted, Federal prosecutors again weren’t charging Christy at that trial, but they started the trial with what the New York Times called an unexpected and startling opening statement. They acknowledged right off the bat at the outset of the trial that Governor Chris Christie of New Jersey, new, that three of his top officials were involved in a plan to shut down, was happening and that the closings were intended to punish a local mayor for declining To support him, look at that page one headline in the New York Times, secutor said: Christy new of the bridge plot. As it happened, prosecutor said the David wildstein and Bill Baroni had bragged to Governor Christie about the lane closings at a memorial service on 9/11. Are we had previously seen a photo of the three of them sort of yukking it up on September 11th at the World Trade Center? That was the third day of the lane closures about how the lane closures have been done in Fort Lee for being deliberately ignored. A brownie contested that on the stand, but he was convicted at trial, Bridget Kelly was also convicted at trial. She testify for her part that she believes that the lane closures were part of a legitimate traffic study and she testified that she told day before she sent that email calling for some traffic problems in Fort Lee. She testified that she told Christy in advance that the closures would cause tremendous tremendous traffic problems for Fort Lee. She says that Christy approved it anyway. She said she talked to Christy about the twice while they were underway and that one of those times she even passed along that mayor sokolich, had asked whether the traffic problems are being brought about as some sort of form of government retribution. Now I should tell you that we reached out to for the story. He did not respond to us directly. He did Issue a statement yesterday, saying quote said before I had no knowledge of the scheme prior to ordering these Lane realignment and had no role in authorizing them. No credible evidence with ever resented to contradict that fact. Anything said to the contrary is simply untrue. He sent that statement General yesterday. He sent us specifically today, out of their sentencing and Kelly were convicted. Prosecutors argued that neither Phil Baroni nor Bridget Kelly should be shown leniency because neither of them had been fully truthful on the stand. Turn the plot at the very end, Bill, Baroni got sentenced to 18 months behind bars in federal prison. Earlier this month start serving his sentence just yesterday. She is appealing her conviction to the US Supreme Court and it is striking that all of the people of all of them only two of them are going to prison. I really thriving in the Trump campaign manager. His name came up here and the overall effort for Christie’s re-election efforts to get all the Democratic Mayors to endorse Christie. He told us all about the plan for Fort Lee in the bridge and why they were doing it, and even he told him about the whole traffic study cover story. He says he told about it all in event. Christie cut ties with Bill something’s doing right now. He was appointed White House political director for President Trump he’s now moved on to become a senior figure in the Trump re-election campaign. I told the mayor didn’t bite and then he had to be punished not now or has ended up at the Trump State Department is now starting a consulting company and also plans to be working on the president’s re-election effort ex governor Chris Christie he’s floating around out There doing okay. Said the Scandal has stepped in a little bit like a little TP on the shoe heel, but Bridget Kelly. What’S the president himself for the Supreme Court intervenes in her case, and now she says there was something that you should know about. This whole Fiasco that you definitely haven’t heard about before something that has not been any part of this new story before, but just sentenced to federal prison yesterday. She is here tonight in Studio, One here just below me on this list to see lots of other great videos. Rachel Maddow looks back at Chris Christie’s short-lived 2016 presidential run, his role early-on in the Trump transition team, and posits how his role in the Bridgegate scandal may have been the reason he didn’t get an important job in the administration.
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Chris Christie’s Future Likely Affected By Bridgegate Scandal | Rachel Maddow | MSNBC