General Question

jca's avatar

Get out your crystal ball: What do you think will be the eventual outcome for NJ Governor Chris Christie?

Asked by jca (28105 points ) January 14th, 2014

In my neck of the woods, Chris Christie is the topic of recent conversation. In September 2013, for 4 days straight, starting from September 9th, the George Washington Bridge (“The GWB”), one of the most heavily traveled bridges in the world (Goes from NJ to NYC) was down to one lane and traffic diverted through Fort Lee, a small city in NJ. That bridge handles everything from large tractor trailers to regular automobiles.

The order to do major lane closures on the bridge came from outside the Port Authority of NY/NJ, which seems to indicate it had political overtones. The NY Times article states that lane closures like that might normally be years in the planning, and this time, the local officials had just 3 days to plan for this.

The GWB is a potential terrorist target. This occurred just days before one of the 9/11 anniversaries.

A text from Christie’s aide said “Time for some traffic problems in Ft. Lee.” That aide has been fired.

A 91 year old woman was unconscious and died, because the ambulance could not get her medical care in time. It was also the first day of school. Kids sat on school buses for hours. People who just started jobs were hours late. A woman whose husband was undergoing a stem cell operation could not be with him for the surgery. Police cars had to jump curbs to get to emergencies. Some people sat in traffic for 6 hours. The list goes on and on about people whose lives were affected for those 4 days. They said traffic was not crawling, it was not moving at all.

Christie is saying he knew nothing of the plan. If that’s true, it makes him look incompetent (a governor who is not aware of something major going on in his state?). If he did know, he looks like a bully.

I like Chris Christie. He is a Republican that I would actually consider voting for. Other Democrats that I know feel the same way about him. I have heard Republicans say he is not conservative enough. I am hoping he is not found to be “guilty” of this, because then my fondness for him will be out the window.

It’s not looking good for him right now. If it is found that he used public property for political gain/motivation or retribution, he could be impeached. There will be an investigation, and subpoenas.

I am putting up some links to NY Times articles that describe it way better and in far more detail than I am able to.

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/01/13/nyregion/a-bridge-to-scandal-behind-the-fort-lee-ruse.html?emc=eta1

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/01/09/nyregion/christie-aide-tied-to-bridge-lane-closings.html?emc=eta1

If you had a crystal ball, what do you think Chris Christie’s future looks like?

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30 Answers

elbanditoroso's avatar

Another politician, full of hubris and invincibility, that shoots himself in the foot.

The republicans will NOT nominate him in 2016 for other reasons (he isn’t conservative enough) but this won’t help, even though he is the most electable republican out there.

If by some miracle the republicans do nominate him, he will be creamed by Hillary.

stanleybmanly's avatar

I think Christie has a good chance of weathering the bridge episode as long as there is no proof that he had knowledge of the scheme. The strongest case for his lack of involvement in the bridge shutdown lies in the fact that the plot was unbelievably stupid and very poorly thought out in both its implications and the transparency of its motives. While the current Republican lineup may be notorious for its abundance of dummies, Christie is one of the3 or 4 left in the country who defy the stereotype.

marinelife's avatar

No national office for him.

bolwerk's avatar

He’ll stay fat.

I doubt he’d have a chance at winning the presidential primary even without this. He’s dumb and belligerent, but not insane enough for the Republikans.

filmfann's avatar

I don’t know if Christie had any knowledge of this before or during the event.
Afterwards, he did insulate himself from any knowledge of it, by asking staffers to tell his senior aides if they knew anything about it. That is kind of iffy.
Could Christie win the nomination? No. The Tea Baggers would demand someone with more conservative credentials. Christie had his picture taken too many times while with Obama. The only time you get away with that is when you are waving a finger in his face.
I like Christie, but this event reeks of Nixonian tactics. This story will not go away soon.

SquirrelEStuff's avatar

I feel that the Republicans will feel as if they are being attacked by Democrats and rally behind Christie, making him the general election favorite before any primary debates even happen.
Notice how democrats are leading the investigation and republicans are quiet. I think it’s a great example of all that’s wrong with our two party political system. Politicians don’t take the side of truth and investigations, but the side of their political party.

On a side note, does anyone know from whom the emails and texts were leaked? Was this through the freedom of information act or a different source(NSA)?

LostInParadise's avatar

The stories coming out about Christie have changed the way I view him. Before, I thought that he was a moderate Republican. Now I view him as a bully. There are a lot of stories about how Christie browbeats and humiliates people who question his actions. Even if he had no knowledge of what his staff doing, which I find hard to believe, the people he chose to management positions is a reflection on him. We are left with the choice between incompetent or petty tyrant. This guy will be lucky to get re-elected as governor. Forget about the presidency.

jca's avatar

The thing about his knowledge of the event, @filmfann, is that he was with the woman Bridget (the one who texted “time for some traffic problems in Ft. Lee”) all day that first day, as he was campaigning. Even if he was not with her, the fact that there were major tie-ups (not just usual slow traffic) on the bridge is not something that he would or should be insulated from.

On some radio show, though, they were saying that just because there’s nobody confirming that he did not know is not the same as proof that he knew (Did I word that right?).

filmfann's avatar

Forget everything I said! The police just raided Justin Bieber’s house to collect evidence he egged his neighbor’s house. Everyone’s attention just shifted.

josie's avatar

He will stay governor.
He may even run for president.People like him now because he makes good TV. The imagine him as a presidential candidate.
But he has a reputation as a vindictive bully. If he ever ran for president, in my opinion, he would eventually start looking sort of spiritually ugly to voters, and drop out before the nominations. But we’ll see.

JLeslie's avatar

I think stopping traffic like this is so horrific that whether he knew about it or not it has tarnished my view of him. He was a Republican I would have considered voting for. Someone said to me this is mafia style, and I have to agree the stereotype fits, but of course it would be politically incorrect to use the term, because then we offend the Italians (he is half Italian) even though almost every group pretty much has a mafia, but in the NY metro and in the movies and TV shows I would say Italian is where people’s minds go, especially since he is Italian. My point is, even if he didn’t order it, he had people around him who think this way. Think about retrobution, blocking votes, and harming innocent people. It is sociopathic behavior, I like to think Christie was not aware, because I really have a hard time thinking he would do something like this.

I think he won’t be able to win the primaries if he does run. But, you never know.

It reminded me of when Elian Gonzales was here and we were going to send him back to Cuba. Some Cubans were lighting tires in the streets in Miami and blocking traffic. To think people in the governors office are as bad as what I consider to be young hoodlums is pretty upsetting.

JLeslie's avatar

What I don’t understand is, if this sort of thing is going to work, wouldn’t the people in charge of Fort Lee be made aware that the governor’s office is going to make their life hell for their citizens of Fort Lee? Why would they take this as retrobution, unless they were told it was? How would anyone ever guess this was on purpose?

glacial's avatar

I simply don’t believe that his senior staff planned and executed this thing without his knowledge. Does that sound like the kind of office Christie would run? Where he had so little knowledge or control over his own people? I think this was all Christie, and that eventually that will be proven. There are plenty of reasons for him to have wanted retribution on Fort Lee, and given what he said in his press conference, he still doesn’t seem to understand that the effects of the lane closures had to seriously affect traffic for more than just that one town. That tells me that perhaps he thought he could do this without a wider audience ever knowing or caring about it.

I understand being a fan of Christie until the point of this scandal (although I didn’t much like Christie much before this broke, due to his frank interviews with Jon Stewart on The Daily Show), but since watching the whole Rob Ford scandal, I’m not looking forward to listening to how much support he will retain after he’s found responsible for this. It’s appalling how little some people care about what a public official does, once they’ve filed him in their “I like this guy” box.

Pachy's avatar

He’s going down.

bolwerk's avatar

@JLeslie: But is setting traffic back a few days worse than setting New Jersey transportation back decades? This seems almost mild next to the long-term damage people like Christie pat themselves on the back for doing.

Skaggfacemutt's avatar

I think New Jersey-ites rather likes the mobster appeal of this guy. They might think he is a bully, but so was Tony Soprano. I think he could have his competition ‘whacked” and they would like him even more.

JLeslie's avatar

@bolwerk Are you saying NJ did have the money for the tunnel? Christie had budget and tax concerns regarding the tunnel. To be honest I don’t know if he was right or full of shit regarding the tunnel. I know I have a real problem with projects being apprived that don’t have money already set aside. A half done tunnel, or a new tax to pay for it, because they estimated incorrectly wouldn’t be good. No matter what, stopping traffic for one day is really really bad in that location.

bolwerk's avatar

@JLeslie: Considering its economic benefits probably would have paid for it in a few years and New Jersey certainly isn’t in financial distress and never was? Sure, they could have paid for it. But the feds were paying for most of it anyway.

LuckyGuy's avatar

Stick a fork in him. He’s done.

If he ordered or approved it, he should be arrested. He’s done
If his top aides thought it up without his knowledge, he has selected the wrong people. He’s done.
If he did not have any part in it and did not notice the problem, he is incompetent. He’s done.

bolwerk's avatar

Unless he’s going to be impeached, I see no reason to think he’s done.

poofandmook's avatar

I would never vote for that piece of shit in a million years. I hope he’s done. He’s the absolute worst part of living in New Jersey.

janbb's avatar

I thinking the further you are from New Jersey the better Christie has looked. His shining moment was during Sandy but other than that he is a bully whom the teachers and unions hate. I think he’ll serve out his term and possibly run for the nomination but I doubt he would have gotten it anyway.

poofandmook's avatar

Of course he looked like a hero during Sandy. What too many failed to notice though was that—for the one and only time in his career—he was just doing what he was supposed to do. He didn’t do anything special. He did exactly what any politician in that situation would do.

The man is an absolute tyrant.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

He’ll be just like Mr. Weiner.. a memory. Not that it would have mattered. Most conservatives don’t care for him anyway. If they gave him the nomination it would be an easy win for the democrats.

TheRealOldHippie's avatar

Hillary runs. Hillary wins. It wouldn’t make any difference if the Republicans ran Christie or not – he’s a closet Democrat, so the Republicans wouldn’t even vote for him.

filmfann's avatar

@TheRealOldHippie I remember them saying the same thing in 2008. Can’t beat Hillary. Oops.

poofandmook's avatar

Hillary will never be president… because I think that while things have loosened enough to get a half non-Caucasian into office, I’ll eat my shoe the day it loosens enough to let a woman run the country. Gasp! The horror!

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

Oh, we are ready for a woman. Just not one like her, she is just like all of the other politicians.

LostInParadise's avatar

I find Hillary not to be very likable, and I don’t think that I am the only Democrat to feel that way. I can’t tell you why exactly, but I cannot picture her as president. It is not a matter of gender. I would have no problem voting for Elizabeth Warren.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

@LostInParadise I could not agree more. I find her ego misplaced and annoying, like fingernails on a dry chalk board or dry dirty cold hands on styrofoam.

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