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Democrat: Report clearing Gov. Christie incomplete


TRENTON, N.J. (AP) - Gov. Chris Christie's lawyers cannot credibly review a political payback plot involving his aides because they are missing information from key players, the head of a New Jersey legislative panel said Monday.

The lack of cooperation from ex-aides Bridget Kelly and Bill Stepien, Christie's two-time campaign manager, raises questions about the thoroughness of the report due out soon, Assemblyman John Wisinewski said.

The New York Times reported Monday that the review will show that the Republican governor and possible 2016 presidential candidate was not involved in the planning or execution of the blocking of traffic in Fort Lee, apparently to punish the town's mayor for not endorsing Christie. Five people close to Christie have lost their jobs in the scandal that threatens his future political plans.

Randy Mastro, the lawyer hired by Christie to lead the review, told the newspaper the governor handed over his iPhone and permitted his email accounts to be searched.

He also said he had access to thousands of emails on government servers by current and former employees such as Kelly and Stepien, who are fighting the legislative panel's subpoena seeking documents involving the lane closings.

It was unclear when the actual findings will be released. Mastro didn't return multiple messages left by The Associated Press. Christie spokesman Kevin Roberts released a statement Monday saying the review was ongoing and has not been delivered to Christie's office.

It's doubtful the results will impact separate investigations by the U.S. attorney's office and the joint legislative panel.

Ian Sams, a spokesman for the Democratic National Committee, said the report would amount to taxpayer-funded damage control. He said taxpayers are unlikely to gain much insight despite having spent more than $1 million on the inquiry.

"For a self-appointed ally to say that the governor is cleared of wrongdoing doesn't pass the smell test," he said.

Democrats say Mastro's past employment also could bias the review. Like Christie, Mastro is a former federal prosecutor. He also was former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani's chief of staff. Several of Christie's aides once worked for Giuliani, and the ex-mayor has vigorously defended Christie on the national talk show circuit.

Mastro defended the integrity of the inquiry to the Times, and said there is no incentive to sugarcoat the findings.

"At the end of the day, we will be judged by whether we got this right," he said, noting that any shortcomings would likely be exposed by the other investigations.

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buckeye3118 March 24 2014 at 6:17 PM

An investigation of this type into the dealings of PopStar MESSiah would make Christie look like Honest Abe Lincoln.

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dwtomczyk March 24 2014 at 6:52 PM

the town i grew up in, in jersey elected a mayor while he was in jail for taking kickbacks

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spike March 24 2014 at 10:56 PM

A team of well know, high power foxes investigated hen house shenanigans and determined the foxes were innocent

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tecusernet March 24 2014 at 5:56 PM

Yet the four Americans who died in Benghazi has no interest by Democrats ...

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TexasKitty March 24 2014 at 10:56 PM

Isn't just so funny how quickly the Christie deal came to be investigated when we've had Benghazi, IRS, NSA, Fast and Furious, voter's fraud like in Ohio, woman voted 6 times for Obama and other scandals and we still have no end to what happened and the truth. Except for the Black woman in Ohio Ms. Richardson was sentenced to 5 years in prison for voter fraud only served 2years or so and she's being lauded by the democrats, now we understand why the democrats do not want voter ID cards.

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2 replies
reneeiamfunnn TexasKitty March 24 2014 at 11:15 PM


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drpmindmender TexasKitty March 25 2014 at 12:16 AM

Isn't it funny, how the FIRST investigation of the Christie administration was decided by BOTH the REPUBLICANS, as well as the Democrats of the New Jersey Legislature.

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Jacquie March 24 2014 at 6:53 PM

AOL, are you editing all my comments? or just the ones you disagee with?

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CHARLIE GENE March 25 2014 at 9:25 AM

people get a life. who in the hell realy cures. nnnnnnnnooooooooooopppppppppaaaaaaaa

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CelticEddie March 24 2014 at 11:00 PM

We will CLEAN DEMOCRATIC CLOCK, come November 2014. I believe in a two party system, CONSERVATIVE REPUBLICANS & The TEA PARTY.

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2 replies
Ginny Albert CelticEddie March 24 2014 at 11:23 PM

Good luck, with your party's brand being totally blackened! One thing I can say about the GOP, they always walk in lockstep with the lies!

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1 reply
chuckhalper Ginny Albert March 25 2014 at 1:17 AM

Lies like if you like your doctors you can keep them?

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jomona21 CelticEddie March 24 2014 at 11:25 PM

Whoopee! Now let's teach a lesson to some of them panhandling Irish Papists. USA, USA, NINA, NINA!

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simijane March 24 2014 at 6:59 PM

There is something about Chris Christie, I don't know what to call it, a healthy ego, maybe, that has made me like him from the beginning. There is something gallantly authentic about him. He has an air of honesty and integrity about him. I see a heart in him as big as he used to be. And I'm a died-in-the-wool Democrat. I've heard other people say it is his likeability factor. I think he would make an awesome and able presidential candidate. However, if I find out for positively sure that he instigated the traffic jam, etc. I'll probably wonder who set him up. With me, ever since I learned of him, he can do very little intentional wrong.

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defiant128 March 24 2014 at 5:53 PM

Does this traffic jam really merit the avalanche of media attention it is getting? Brave Americans died fighting valiantly in Benghazi, while requesting help that was never sent. We didn't even try! A couple of planes from Aviano, no, just one, with one bomb, would have made those mothers run. It wouldn't even had to have been a big one. We didn't have any submarines or ships in the Mediterranean from which to launch one Tomahawk? Gutless Bastards! It is amazing that this country still has people stepping up to the plate. One day when they are called again to get our ass out of trouble, they will sit down and say, "No!" And I wouldn't blame them. But, I know this will never happen, because they live by a higher standard.

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