Former Christie Official and Ally Set To Plead Guilty For Role In Bridgegate
I've obtained this previously unreleased photo of David Wildstein with Chris and Mary Pat Christie, December 2011: pic.twitter.com/kenRu9iuM0
— Steve Kornacki (@SteveKornacki) April 29, 2015
The first shoe is set to drop in the Bridgegate saga as former Port Authority of New York and New Jersey official David Wildstein will reportedly plead guilty in court today for his role in orchestrating illegal lane closures on the George Washington Bridge. Wildstein has known New Jersey Governor Chris Christie since childhood and they attended the same high school. Wildstein also played a crucial role in Christie’s rise to power and left his position leading one of New Jersey’s political blogs to work for the Christie Administration.
The timing of Wildstein’s guilty plea is raising eyebrows as rumors of further indictments have circulated throughout Trenton and beyond. Wildstein’s agreement to plead guilty likely indicates a collaboration withe the US Attorney’s office – something Wildstein was angling for early one in the process.
Which raises an important question – who did Wildstein give up to get his deal?
Though Governor Christie has said he does not think the case has much to do with him, prosecutors may disagree. Wildstein previously, through his attorney, claimed to have evidence that linked Christie to the illegal lane closures. Whatever Wildstein had has likely been turned over to the US Attorney’s office as part of any deal.
There are also other figures involved in the Bridgegate affair that may be of interest to prosecutors vis a vis public corruption charges. Both former New Jersey Attorney General David Samson and former State Senator Bill Baroni resigned from the Port Authority in the aftermath of the scandal.
Former Port Authority Deputy Director Baroni falsely testified before a state assembly committee that the lane closures were part of a “traffic study,” that was latter proved to have never existed. Former Port Authority Chairman David Samson was revealed to have been using his office to advance the interests of his law firm Wolff Samson and receiving special flights from United Airlines during consideration of the airline’s proposal that required Port Authority resources.
Wildstein has given every appearance that he was willing to do anything to avoid prison time which may mean the better question is who didn’t he give up?