CNN reported on Thursday evening that after Chris Christie was elected to his first term as Governor of New Jersey, he gave the Port Authority a directive to place his ‘good friend’ David Wildstein into an executive position. Therefore, the Port Authority created a position that did not exist prior to Wildstein showing up on their doorstep: Director of Interstate Capital Projects. Wildstein was also introduced around the agency as a close acquaintance of Christie by Deputy Executive Director of the Port Authority.
Prior to Christie being elected to his first term, the agency had four executive level positions. After Christie’s election, the total jumped up to six. Presumably, this was for a couple of reasons. One, Christie was giving a friend of his a high-paying, cushy position because he could. Two, he wanted to have a close friend on the inside who would report anything and everything back to him.
Per CNN’s sources, Wildstein was essentially Christie’s ‘eyes and ears’ in the office. Christie felt comfortable with Wildstein that he’d tell him the truth and confident enough in him that he’d be able to get juicy information. With Wildstein’s past as a political blogger, he probably felt that he’d definitely have a penchant for snooping and digging up info. Obviously, Christie’s camp denied that Wildstein was being used to gather information for the Governor. Christie’s spokesman Colin Reed had this to say:
“As the governor made clear last week, David Wildstein is not a childhood friend and his interactions with him over the last four years have been limited. Last month, he appointed a new leader at the Port Authority with a proven record of rooting out corruption and reforming government agencies to help lead the agency.”
Earlier on Thursday, the Port Authority informed the Senate Commerce Committee that there was absolutely no evidence that there was a legitimate traffic study. Instead, the lane closures were ordered directly by Wildstein. Of course, Christie has acted as if him and Wildstein were not close and hardly friends. However, as more and more is revealed, it not only appears that they were close, but that Wildstein acted at the pleasure of Christie. he let the Governor know what was going on at all times, and Christie utilized him in any manner he saw fit.
Each day we seem to get another revelation, another peek behind the curtain. What we are seeing is a state’s executive branch that is run in a similar fashion to a mafia syndicate, with Christie as the Boss. Wildstein acted as a loyal soldier, working under Christie’s capo in the Port Authority, Bill Baroni, the Deputy Executive Director. However, Wildstein, being close to the Boss, was able to report directly to Christie if he so desired. And if there is something that the Boss wants done, his soldiers are going to make sure it gets done!