Bridget Anne Kelly, a close aide to New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R), hit send on an eight-word email five months ago. On Wednesday, she became infamous for it.
“Time for some traffic problems in Fort Lee,” Kelly wrote on Aug. 13 to one of the governor’s appointees to the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.
Kelly’s dramatic declaration, which was included in documents obtained by TPM and other media outlets on Wednesday, appear to provide a direct link between the Christie administration and the closing of lanes on the George Washington Bridge in September. Those closures lead to a massive, multi-day traffic jam in the town of Fort Lee, N.J. — a traffic jam Democrats have argued was intended as a form of retaliation against Fort Lee’s Democratic mayor, Mark Sokolich, who declined to endorse Christie’s re-election bid last year.
A veteran of New Jersey politics, Kelly has been part of the Christie administration since 2010, and has kept a relatively low profile in the press. Kelly currently serves as Christie’s deputy chief of staff for legislative and intergovernmental affairs, a position she has held since April. Prior to that, she was director of intergovernmental and legislative affairs. Her first job in the Christie camp was managing the administration’s relationship with the state legislature.
Kelly also previously worked in New Jersey state government as an aide to state Assemblyman David Russo (R), and her official biography on the New Jersey governor’s website states that Kelly has also been active “local and county Republican organizations.”
According to the website of the Ramsey, New Jersey Republican Club, Kelly served as club president from 2005 to 2011.
Beyond that, we don’t know much Kelly. She appears to have updated a Twitter account semi-frequently until September. (The account has been closed, but TPM found a cached version.) One day in October 2012, she used her account to complain about trouble on the road.
“Enya is the only thing that made the 2 hours of traffic tolerable today,” Kelly wrote.
Photo via robertschroeder.com shows Kelly meeting with Assemblyman Robert Schroeder (R) in 2010.