New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) said on Friday he can’t remember receiving a text message from one of his staffers about key testimony in the BridgeGate scandal.
The staffer, Regina Egea, told state lawmakers last month that she sent Christie a text message in November regarding testimony being given by one of the people the governor appointed to the agency that oversees the George Washington Bridge.
Egea went on to say that she later deleted the text message and no longer had a record of it.
Asked about the message at a Friday news conference, Christie said he didn’t remember anything about it.
“I have no recollection of her ever sending me a text,” the governor said, according to the New Jersey Star-Ledger newspaper. “So I can’t remember what it was over.”
The BridgeGate scandal, which has dogged Christie for months, has been focused on lane closures in September on the George Washington Bridge. Some Democrats have speculated the closures were ordered to cause a multi-day traffic jam in the town of Fort Lee as political payback against the mayor there.
Egea told lawmakers investigating the scandal that the text message to Christie had been regarding Bill Baroni, who the governor had appointed to the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. Baroni testified about the bridge lane closures before a panel of state lawmakers in November, and later resigned in the wake of the scandal.
In Baroni’s testimony, he said that the lane closures were part of a traffic study on the bridge. Egea has said she helped Baroni edit his testimony in advance.
Christie has denied having anything to do with the lane closures and has blamed them on rogue staffers who are no longer with his office.
Nick Martin is an associate editor at TPM in New York City. He came to the site in 2011 as a reporter for TPMMuckraker. Previously, he worked in Arizona, first as a staff reporter for a local newspaper and later as a freelance journalist. He also ran the news blog Heat City. Contact him at email@example.com