New Jersey Republicans on the legislative committee investigating four days of traffic jams at the George Washington Bridge accused the panel’s co-chairman of misusing public resources for political gain.
Republicans, the minority party in the legislature, issued a 119-page statement today accusing Assemblyman John Wisniewski, a Democrat leading the panel, of using the probe to “take down Governor Chris Christie, the biggest political threat to state and national Democrats, and in so doing, become the next Democrat gubernatorial candidate.”
All four Republican committee members -- Senator Kevin O’Toole and Assembly members Holly Schepisi, Amy Handlin and Michael Patrick Carroll -- issued the statement before a committee meeting where members are scheduled to discuss a 136- page interim report of their findings. Eleven months after Christie apologized for deliberate lane closings at the bridge in September 2013, no evidence has linked him to the plot.
Democrats leading the probe say their work isn’t done and plan to call more witnesses. Republicans say it’s time to end the probe.
“Assemblyman Wisniewski, a former New Jersey Democratic State Committee chairman, has answered the bell when national Democratic leaders have looked to launch attacks against New Jersey’s nationally popular Republican governor,” the report issued by the panel’s four Republican members said.
Christie, 52, has said he will announce next year whether he will run for president in 2016. He has denied any role in the lane closings, a claim backed up by an internal report. The matter remains under criminal investigation by U.S. Attorney Paul Fishman in Newark.
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