Monday, December 22, 2014

POSTED: Sunday, December 21, 2014, 2:50 PM
Joanne Chesimard, from FBI wanted poster.

Gov. Christie has entered the debate over President Obama’s decision to normalize relations with Cuba, urging Obama to demand the Cuban government return a woman convicted of killing a New Jersey state trooper.

In a letter to Obama released Sunday by Christie’s office, the governor is seeking the return of Joanne Chesimard, who was convicted of shooting and killing a state trooper in 1973 following a traffic stop on the New Jersey Turnpike. Chesimard escaped from prison in 1979 and at some point fled to Cuba. The FBI has placed her on its list of “Most Wanted Terrorists.”

“I do not share your view that restoring diplomatic relations without a clear commitment from the Cuban government of the steps they will take to reverse decades of human rights violations will result in a better and more just Cuba for its people,” Christie said in the letter to Obama.

POSTED: Friday, December 19, 2014, 6:52 PM
N.J. Gov. Chris Christie (Carlo Allegri / Reuters)

Thursday marked the last full voting session of the year for New Jersey lawmakers – and the latest time they’ve failed to override a veto of Gov. Christie’s.

The Democratic-controlled Legislature has unsuccessfully tried to override Christie on 19 bills since the Republican governor took office in 2010, according to the Office of Legislative Services, including three bills this year.

Attempts for two of those bills took place Thursday. One of the bills would have required the state to pay into the public pension system quarterly, rather than annually. Christie previously rejected the bill as “an improper and unwarranted intrusion” upon the executive branch’s power to decide the timing of payments.

POSTED: Wednesday, December 17, 2014, 3:04 PM
U.S. Attorney Paul Fishman. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

U.S. Attorney for New Jersey Paul Fishman today acknowledged a need to finish his office's investigation into the George Washington Bridge lane closures as quickly as possible, though he wouldn't say how long that might take.

Asked by WNYC’s Brian Lehrer whether, with Christie considering a run for president in 2016, he should “indict or clear before too long,” Fishman said: “The answer to that question, of course, is yes.”

“We try to move every investigation we have as fast as we possibly can, because if people know they’re being investigated, that’s always what we owe people,” Fishman said. “In that respect, this investigation is no different.

POSTED: Tuesday, December 16, 2014, 6:11 PM

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush’s announcement today that he will "actively explore" a 2016 presidential bid unleashed a wave of speculation about how his action might affect other Republicans –  Gov. Christie included.

Christie said earlier this month that he wouldn’t make a decision on running in 2016 until “well into” next year. But some donors and political consultants have told news outlets today that Bush’s move could pressure Christie to speed up his timetable, in part due to the prospect the two would compete for similar donors.

A top Christie backer, however, dismissed that idea. “In fact, if I were Christie, I’d let it play out a bit and learn a few things,” Kenneth Langone, the billionaire co-founder of Home Depot, said in a phone interview today.

POSTED: Tuesday, December 9, 2014, 2:29 PM
Gov. Chris Christie. (Tom Gralish / Staff Photographer)

Gov. Christie is heading back to Iowa.

After visiting the key presidential nominating state four times in recent months as chairman of the Republican Governors Association, Christie will return on Jan. 24 in Des Moines to speak at a conservative summit, according to the event’s organizers.

The Iowa Freedom Summit, sponsored by Citizens United and U.S. Rep. Steve King, will also feature former vice-presidential nominee Sarah Palin, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, and former presidential candidate Rick Santorum.

POSTED: Thursday, December 4, 2014, 11:55 PM
Gov. Chris Christie speaks with Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker in the background as the two campaigned together at Wausau Supply in Schofield, Wis., on Friday, Oct. 31, 2014. (AP Photo/The Wausau Daily Herald, Dan Young)

A draft report says the legislative committee investigating the September 2013 lane closures at the George Washington Bridge has not been able to determine what Gov. Christie knew about the closures.

The 136-page report, which cites the committee’s inability to interview key witnesses, also does not identify a clear motive for the lane closures, which snarled traffic in Fort Lee over the course of four days.

The report describes the closures as “directly implemented” by Bridget Anne Kelly, the now-fired Christie aide who wrote an email in August 2013 calling for “traffic problems in Fort Lee.” And it says Kelly worked closely with David Wildstein, a former Port Authority of New York and New Jersey official who replied "Got it" to Kelly’s email. He resigned last December, a month before the scandal over the emails exploded.

POSTED: Monday, December 1, 2014, 7:08 PM
Gov. Chris Christie attends a birthday bash for Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad on October 25, 2014, in Clive, Iowa. (Photo by Steve Pope/Getty Images)

In vetoing a ban on narrow cages that prevent pregnant pigs from turning around, Gov. Christie drew accusations last week from animal-rights advocates of bowing to the will of the pork industry, which has a large presence in the early presidential nominating state of Iowa.

On Monday, the governor won a positive reaction for his decision – in Iowa.

Gov. Terry Branstad – on whose behalf Christie made several trips to Iowa while serving as chairman of the Republican Governors Association – called Christie’s veto of legislation that would have banned pig gestation crates in New Jersey a “good decision,” though he didn't believe it was motivated by presidential politics, according to the Des Moines Register.

POSTED: Wednesday, November 26, 2014, 8:44 PM
Gov. Chris Christie. ( TOM GRALISH / Staff Photographer )

As he spoke Wednesday about the situation this week in Ferguson, Missouri, Gov. Christie talked about national anxiety over a lack of leadership.

According to several news outlets, Christie was asked while volunteering at a Newark soup kitchen about the reaction following Monday's announcement that a grand jury had not indicted white police officer Darren Wilson in the shooting death of unarmed black teenager Michael Brown.

Christie called the situation "tragic," saying that everyone had a right to protest, but protests needed to be nonviolent, according to the Associated Press.

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