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Feds Investigating Christie Use Of Sandy Funds

From CNN:

Feds investigating Christie’s use of Sandy relief funds

By Chris Frates | January 13, 2014

Washington (CNN) — Just days after dismissing two top advisers for their roles in the George Washington Bridge scandal, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is facing questions over the use of Superstorm Sandy relief funds.

CNN has learned that federal officials are investigating whether Christie improperly used those relief funds to produce tourism ads that starred him and his family…

If the Sandy inquiry finds any wrongdoing, it could prove even more damaging to Christie’s national ambitions. His performance during and after the superstorm has been widely praised and is a fundamental part of his straight-shooting political brand.

In the new probe, federal auditors will examine New Jersey’s use of $25 million in Sandy relief funds for a marketing campaign to promote tourism at the Jersey Shore after Sandy decimated the state’s coastline in late 2012, New Jersey Democratic Rep. Frank Pallone told CNN.

Somehow this story reminds us of the fable about the frog and the scorpion. (Where the frog carries a scorpion across a river, but the scorpion stings him anyway ‘because I’m a scorpion.’)

In an August letter, Pallone asked the Department of Housing and Urban Development inspector general to look into how Christie chose to spend the marketing money approved by the department…

So this was in the works even before the November elections. Which could help explain why the Democrats did not do more to try to beat Christie in the November elections. They figured they could bring him down by a different way.

Pallone wrote that he was concerned about the bidding process for the firm awarded the marketing plan; the winning firm is charging the state about $2 million more than the next lowest bidder. The winning $4.7 million bid featured Christie and his family in the advertisements while the losing $2.5 million proposal did not feature the Christies.

On Sunday, Pallone told CNN that the inspector general conducted a preliminary review of the spending and concluded that there was enough evidence to launch a full-scale investigation into the state’s use of federal funds. The audit will take several months, and the findings will be issued in an official report, he said.

Translation: They want to tease this ‘scandal’ now while Christie is in the news. But they want to revisit it more fully closer to the 2016 primaries.

Pallone, a 27-year veteran of the House and vocal Christie critic, said this is not about politics.

Of course it isn’t.

"This was money that could have directly been used for Sandy recovery. And, as you know, many of my constituents still haven’t gotten the money that is owed them to rebuild their homes or raise their homes or to help," he told CNN.

Democrats slammed Christie over the summer for starring in taxpayer-funded ads as he was running for re-election in November, arguing it gave him an unfair advantage. Christie aides said at the time that the winning bid provided more value…

But as bad as the bridge scandal is for Christie, if investigators find he improperly spent Sandy funds, it could get far worse, tarnishing the signature achievement that has made him a serious contender for the White House."

Sandy was Christie’s signature achievement? Who knew? We thought it was the way Christie stood up to the unions.

This article was posted by Steve Gilbert on Monday, January 13th, 2014. Comments are currently closed.

3 Responses to “Feds Investigating Christie Use Of Sandy Funds”

  1. Translation – “You’ve been warned Other Republicans”

    Next week: FEC and FBI agents begin rounding up Tea Party members for mass executions ..

  2. mr_bill

    I think this is about squashing Christie before he can get going on exploring a presidential run. If I had to guess, I would suspect the Clintons. Christie could gobble up a lot of votes that Shrillary needs to win. That said, I don’t want Christie to run. Yes, he stood up to the unions five years ago, but Rahm did the same thing in ChiCongo, maybe not as publicly, but he did the same thing policy-wise. That certainly doesn’t mean I’m going to vote for Rahm (not even for dog catcher), and Christie has left a lot to desire since his first election. If he ordered the bridge closed, he should answer for it, right after nerobama answers for his political vengeance. If he had nothing to do with it (perhaps it was just a couple of low-level employees from the Ohio Field Office), then he should get some very public apologies from a lot of folks.

    I’m not sorry to see this causing trouble for his presidential hopes. I’d much rather see a ticket with Ben Carson, Allen West, Ted Cruz, or some other like-minded folks. Any of them would do this country a lot more good than Jabba the Governor.




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