In this Feb. 6, 2016, file photo, then Republican presidential candidate, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie gets in his car after a campaign event in Bedford, N.H.
Photo by Elise Amendola/AP

Misconduct case against Chris Christie will move forward

It’s no secret that New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) was a finalist for the Republican Party’s vice presidential nomination, but given the latest developments, GOP officials are probably quite pleased he’s not the party’s national ticket. WNBC in New York reported this morning:
A judge has found probable cause for a complaint of official misconduct against Gov. Chris Christie related to the George Washington Bridge lane closures.

The case now goes to the Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office, which will decide whether to bring the issue to a grand jury for possible indictment.
As the report explained, the case was brought by Bill Brennan, an activist and retired firefighter, who has accused the governor of knowing about the lane-closure conspiracy and failing to stop the scheme. Today’s court ruling allows the case to move forward, raising the possibility – just the possibility – of Christie facing charges.

Complicating matters a bit, the WNBC report noted that sending the case to the Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office in New Jersey raises an additional wrinkle: the acting county prosecutor was appointed by the governor directly. To avoid a conflict of interest, the prosecutor may need to recuse himself from the case.

The “Bridgegate” trial against two former Christie aides – Bill Baroni and Bridget Anne Kelly – is ongoing. Based on the testimony of David Wildstein, a former close ally to the governor, federal prosecutors have accused Christie of knowing about the scheme as it unfolded, despite his denials.

It’s a rare point of agreement between the prosecution and the defense: Baroni and Kelly’s lawyers, as part of the defense, are also insisting Christie knew.

Bridgegate, Chris Christie and New Jersey

Misconduct case against Chris Christie will move forward