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“I am embarrassed and humiliated by the conduct of some of the people on my team,” “I also need to apologize for my failure as the governor of this state to understand the true nature of this problem sooner.”
He said he’d fired deputy chief of staff Bridget Kelly effective immediately. “I’ve terminated her employment because she lied to me.”
You all know the story, Bridget Anne Kelly was Chris Christie’s top aide, the same aide who exchanged text messages with Former Deputy Executive Director Bill Baroni David Wildstein a member of the Port Authority to close lanes on the George Washington Bridge in order to punish Democratic mayor of Fort Lee, Mark Sokolich for refusing to endorse Christie during his re-election.
Christie said his staff was indeed as tight-knit as advertised, and that he was “heartbroken” someone had betrayed that trust. “I would never have come out here … and made a joke about these lane closures if I had ever had any inkling that anyone on my staff would have been so stupid.”
Christie also said he’d instructed his two-time campaign manager, Bill Stepien, to withdraw his nomination to lead the New Jersey Republican Party, and to drop his contract advising the Republican Governor’s Association. “Bill has been one of my closest advisers,” he said. But “I can never allow personal feelings or longstanding relationships to get in the way of doing my job.” Both moves were reported minutes before the announcement by the New York Post.
Thanks to Newser for story contributions.