Once again, Governor Grabbit gets caught in the crack between his freespending-as-long-as-it’s-somebody-else’s-money habits and his incurable braggadocio. Kudos to the reporters at NJ.com for digging up the story, and to the Washington Post for sharing with the rest of us:
… NJ.com, the online arm of 12 New Jersey newspapers — which, by the way, publishes under the amazing tagline, “True Jersey” — reports that Christie, a possible 2016 GOP presidential candidate, has resisted press efforts to obtain records detailing what the Executive Protection Unit spends on its state-issued American Express cards.
The Executive Protection Unit is responsible for Christie’s security and Christie’s legal team has claimed that releasing information about the unit’s spending could compromise the governor’s safety.
But, back in April, Christie attended a town hall in the very, “True Jersey,” hamlet of Hasbrouck Heights. While there, Christie answered a question from seven-year-old Christopher Tartaglia, NJ.com reports. Tartaglia wanted to know how many body guards Christie has…
Even though he doesn’t want his political enemies to know how the Executive Protection Unit managed to drop a cool million just on Amex bills, Christie could not resist showing off what a big, powerful guy like Chris throws around for bodyguards. As NJ reporter Claude Brodesser-Akner adds:
… Speaking from the bench last Thursday, Judge Mary C. Jacobson said she was “very troubled” that the governor’s legal team’s efforts to suppress records of what the Executive Protection Unit spends on its state-issued American Express cards was in such stark contrast to the governor’s own “openness” about the details of his protection team, according to a report on NorthJersey.com…
Since Christie took office, the executive protection unit has spent just shy of $1 million on food, lodging and other travel-related expenses, far more than previous Gov. Jon Corzine or any past holder of the office.
The Christie administration has blocked the release of the security detail’s credit card statements, claiming that disclosing the specifics of prior executive protection charges would needlessly increase the security risks faced by the governor in future.
However, without the records, the public can never know which costs are the result of conducting state business and which were personal or political trips associated with the governor’s duties as chairman of the Republican Governors Association or his 2016 ambitions….
The judge has ordered the head of Christie’s security detail to testify in private before June 12 about why the records should be kept secret, but she added that she had “skepticism” about the governor’s arguments for the need to keep such an accounting secret…
Rest assured that all possible “yeah but look how many guys you need to guard a perimeter as large as Christie” wisecracks have already been taken by the commentors at NJ.com and WaPo. Still plenty of petard/windbag jokes available!