The larger question emerging in the now multiple investigations of the Christie administration is, How much, if any, were policy decisions and actions being dictated by what may have been political scheming on the part of those acting for Gov. Christie – and possibly the governor himself?
In a cleanly-run government, the answer would be zero. As multiple investigations by multiple entities proceed – Hoboken, the GWB lanes, the merged legislative SCI and newer federal probes – it may be months before we know what the administration did, who gave orders, and whether state and/or federal laws have been broken, or whether merely commonly-understood rules of ethical political conduct have been.
Today, news came that both the NJ State Republican Committee (NJGOP) and the Christie re-election campaign have retained high-powered D.C. firm Patton Boggs (which also has offices in Newark). [That firm also represents Nicole Davidman, wife of Christie mouthpiece Michael Drewniak, who has been issued a subpoena by the legislative SCI]. Robert Luskin (who represented Karl Rove in the Valerie Plame case) and Mark Sheridan are the lead attorneys. Sheridan is based in New Jersey, has a relationship with the NJGOP and was a member of Christie’s 2009 transition team. Sheridan:
“The Christie for Governor re-election campaign and the New Jersey Republican State Committee received subpoenas for documents from the U.S. Attorney’s office, in addition to the subpoena the campaign previously received from the state legislative committee. All three subpoenas focus on the closure of lanes on the George Washington Bridge. The campaign and the state party intend to cooperate with the U.S. Attorney’s office and the state legislative committee and will respond to the subpoenas accordingly.”