New Jersey Has Paid More Than $3 Million For Christie’s BridgeGate Defense

ASSOCIATED PRESS

An invoice made public Monday night showed that lawyers hired by New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s office billed the state $2.16 million in February, according to The Newark Star-Ledger.

Added to the nearly $1.1 million billed for work done in January, that brings Christie’s office’s legal bills related to the George Washington Bridge scandal to $3.26 million, without yet taking work done since March into account.

Christie’s office hired the firm Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher in January to conduct an internal review of the September lane closures on the George Washington Bridge, and to respond to the various investigations looking into the incident. In March, the firm released a report — called the Mastro report after lead attorney Randy Mastro — clearing Christie of any role in the scandal. Democrats have criticized the report as a “whitewash,” and several current and former Christie administration figures have cited factual errors in the document.

According to the Star-Ledger, Acting New Jersey Attorney General John Hoffman also said Monday that he had approved seven private law firms to represent 23 staff members. The names of the individual staff members were not released. In addition, the state has agreed to pay a portion of former Christie campaign manager Bill Stepien’s legal bills.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Eric Lach is a reporter for TPM. From 2010 to 2011, he was a news writer in charge of the website?s front page. He has previously written for The Daily, NewYorker.com, GlobalPost and other publications. He can be reached at ericl@talkingpointsmemo.com

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