Has ‘Bridgegate’ Ruined New Jersey Governor Chris Christie’s Political Career?

Last September the traffic on the most traveled bridge in the world, the George Washington Bridge, slowed to a trickle for several days after lanes were ostensibly closed in order to complete a traffic study.

Unfortunately it is now known that there was no traffic study. And it appears that the George Washington, which spans the Hudson River, connecting Manhattan, New York to Fort Lee, New Jersey, was shut down by now-fired Christie Deputy Chief of Staff Bridget Anne Kelly and then-Port Authority official David Wildstein, as possible retaliation against a Democratic Mayor who refused to endorse Christie. Or, at least the retaliation-against-the-Mayor theory is one motive under review; MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow has posited another theory. The lane closures that had traffic ground to a standstill on the bridge is still under investigation.

Christie has denied he played any part in the lane closures.

One part of me believes Christie when he says he played no part in this. I know it’s hard to believe that Christie didn’t personally order the closures but if you think about what has been said about the Christie administration in the past few weeks it may become easier to swallow. Numerous sources–named and unnamed–have come forward to say that Christie and his cronies are vindictive; they’ll offer all kinds of help to potential Democratic endorser’s, but as soon as said endorsement doesn’t come through, all support is pulled by the Governor–your meetings start to get cancelled and your calls don’t get returned. You become persona non grata once you make the mistake of getting on the Governor’s bad side.

Considering how Christie and his camp are said to have treated those who didn’t toe the Christie line, there was probably a culture created in Governors office of enacting retribution against those who didn’t toe the line. If Christies’ cronies began to feel comfortable with this office culture then it would only be a matter of time before they would begin to feel comfortable punishing those they saw fit for slights both real and imagined without having to get their boss’s approval–after all, that’s how you do things, right?

Is Christie’s career over? Maybe; maybe, not. The Governor is definitely fighting for his political life right now, a life that quite a few believed would include a shot at the Republican nomination for President in 2016. Christie’s future depends on what comes out over the next few months concerning who knew what and when they knew it.

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