Assemblyman Gordon Johnson, a member of the Assembly Transportation Committee, has been asking questions about the George Washington Bridge lane closures. He told NJTV News Managing Editor Mike Schneider that he thinks that Gov. Chris Christie put on a “great act” at yesterday’s press conference.
Johnson said that there was an environment of fear and intimidation, which he said came out during a transportation meeting on Dec. 9 when Robert Durando and Cedric Fulton came before the committee and were asked by John Wisniewski if they feared for their jobs if they did not follow orders. They said that if they did not follow David Wildstein’s orders they felt there would have been repercussions, Johnson said.
When asked about Christie’s press conference and apology, Johnson said, “I think it was a great act. I think he is sorry that he got caught. I’m not sure that Bridget Anne Kelly, that he dismissed, was the only one in his office involved in this,” Johnson said.
Johnson said that he does not think Kelly initiated the action because he does not think she was that type of person.
“I believe there were more people involved in the governor’s administration. I find it hard to believe that the governor did not know about this,” Johnson said.
Johnson said that Sen. Loretta Weinberg went to the Port Authority on Oct. 16 and asked questions about the traffic tie-up and received no answers. On Nov. 13, Johnson said that Weinberg, Wisniewski and himself went back and asked questions again, receiving no answers. They went back again on Dec. 4, and by Dec. 6, Wildstein resigned.
Johnson said that with six members of the Port Authority that represent New Jersey — three nominated by Christie — someone would have made a phone call saying, “We have elected officials here, you need a heads up on this, to see what is going on.”
“I don’t think we are getting the full story from the governor and his administration. That is why it is so important that the Transportation Committee gets the extension on the subpoena powers, which will happen in our next session, and we bring some people in to testify under oath,” Johnson said.