Friday, 10 January 2014

Gov Chris Christie Fort Lee GW Bridge Scandal hurts ordinary people

Fort Lee in the foreground with George Washing Bridge leading to The Bronx one of the five boroughs in New York City.
New Jersey Governor Christ Christie is catching hell for the right reason. In September 2013 he ordered the access lanes to the George Washington Bridge that links the small town of Fort Lee, New Jersey with its larger neighbor New York City closed. Without considering the consequences or questioning the governor's order, David Wildstein, a childhood friend and supporter of Christie and the Director of Port Authority of NY-NJ complied with the order. The closure was not carried out due to reconstruction or traffic decision but was aimed at Fort Lee's Mayor Mark Sokolich who refused to endorse Christie as the governor during his recent gubernatorial reelection. An email from Christie's office was written up by his aide Bridgette Ann Kelley to Wildstein where  Kelley mentioned within the email that it was "Time for some traffic problems in Fort Lee." Sokolich is a Democrat while Christie is a Republican who is known for his brash and in your face persona. Yet his supporters also note that he is willing to work with Democrats in the past including President Obama in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. Unlike some of his peers, Christie has shown himself to be occassionally moderate in his political persuasions. Christie is considered not as a Republican presidential nominee for the 2016 elections but as the Republican nominee. Christie has visited Fort Lee to personally apologize. This hasn;t stopped some NJ residents from suing the governor.

The GW Bridge is a major transportation route linking Fort Lee to the borough of The Bronx, Manhattan and other neighboring suburbs in upstate New York. For four days, traffic was transformed into a virtual parking lot as the lanes reminded close disrupting crucial emergency vehicles transporting patients suffering from heart attacks or answering emergency calls. A 91 year old woman later died as a result of the closure. It also delayed school children driving between both towns on  their way to the first day of the new school year. The school children were equally mocked by Wildstein for being supporters of NJ Senator Barbara Buono. Whether the school children are politically minded or not is the least of their worries. Disrupting children's education or causing deaths for a personal political vendetta is despicable in anywhere in the world. Once again, the world is witnessing the double standards American politicians be they the governor or congressional members are showing to their own citizens. While the United States preaches exceptional good governance and reducing corruption around the world, within the country it downplays corruption and punishing vendettas against opposing political leaders that literally hurts ordinary children, men and women via denying access to necessary critical infrastructure. The school children and adults have had enough of political leaders' nonsensical punishments. As Americans go to the polls for the upcoming 2014 Midterm elections across the country, many voters will keep Christie's Fort Lee Bridge scandal in mind as well as the previous Government Shutdown among other lesser political vendettas.   

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