Day three of Bridge-gate brought with it another data dump. The New Jersey Assembly group investigating the September lane closures leading to the George Washington Bridge released thousands of pages of documents related to the scandal on Friday.
The Bergen Record has posted the documents, which include emails, text messages, and PowerPoint presentations written by Governor Christie’s staff and the Port Authority. But for those of you without the time or care to scroll through all 908 pages, here are the Cliffs Notes, care of the New York Times:
Officials loyal to Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey went to elaborate means to make it appear that the September closing of lanes leading to the George Washington Bridge in Fort Lee, N.J., was part of a traffic study, even though their private communications suggest the move was purely political, documents released on Friday show.
The documents also show a concerted effort to keep their true motivation hidden, including the insistence by one official of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey in an email that communications about the matter should not be conducted by email or discussed publicly.
Yesterday, Governor Christie, in a marathon press conference, apologized for the incident, but denied any involvement. As the investigation continues, the big question is whether Christie indeed had no knowledge of the scheme. Today’s batch of documents, so far, does not reveal any contradiction to his claim.
This story is still developing and will be updated as information becomes available. Elsewhere in Slate, David Weigel asks for help in building a comprehensive list of petty Chris Christie scandals.