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Hunter Walker

Hunter Walker is a national affairs reporter for TPM. He came to the site in 2013 from the New York Observer. He has also written for New York Magazine, Gawker, the Village Voice, Forbes, The Daily, and Deadspin. He can be reached at hunter@talkingpointsmemo.com

Articles by Hunter

Updated: January 17, 2014, 6:05 PM

Several close aides to New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R), along with his campaign, are among those who reportedly are receiving subpoenas in the latest round of the investigation into the George Washington Bridge scandal.

Multiple media outlets on Friday reported the names of 15 of at least 20 people and organizations that are being subpoenaed by a pair of special legislative committees that have been set up to investigate the scandal.

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Updated: January 16, 2014, 1:08 PM

New Jersey Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg (D) said on Thursday that she plans to subpoena Gov. Chris Christie's newly appointed chief of staff, among others, in the bridge scandal investigation.

Weinberg, who will chair a special Senate committee being created to investigate the scandal, said during an interview on MSNBC that subpoenas would be handed out to Christie's newly appointed chief of staff, Regina Egea and two of the governors appointees at the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. Christie appointed Egea to replace Kevin O'Dowd as his chief of staff, though her appointment is currently on hold due to the ongoing investigation.

Weinberg said she planned to ask for documents related to the closures of lanes on the George Washington Bridge in September, which led to days of traffic gridlock in the town of Fort Lee, N.J. Some Democrats, including Weinberg, have alleged the closures were ordered as political revenge against the Democratic mayor of Fort Lee.

"When we see those documents, then we can make our next decisions," she said.

The other subpoenas would be sent to Port Authority chairman David Samson and commissioner William "Pat" Schuber.

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New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) is no stranger to accusations of political bullying and backroom dealing like those at the heart of the bridge scandal.

TPM has found one of the first times the brash political brawler faced such claims was in the mid-1980s when he was an undergrad at the University of Delaware.

There, student newspaper archives show, Christie was accused of establishing a college political machine that rewarded his friends and drove his classmates out of student government. One fellow student even wrote to the paper to decry Christie's "cronyism" and question the legitimacy of the future governor's reign.

The accusations have have relevance anew now that the potential 2016 presidential contender is facing the biggest turmoil of his career with the uproar over the George Washington Bridge. Democrats in New Jersey have accused members of Christie's administration of using their power to close lanes on the bridge, causing a traffic jam in the town of Fort Lee, N.J. as revenge against the mayor there. Christie's office did not respond to a request for comment.

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Lawmakers in New Jersey's General Assembly could send out a fresh round of subpoenas as early as Thursday afternoon in the scandal that has consumed Gov. Chris Christie's administration. Assemblyman John Wisniewski (D) told TPM on Wednesday evening that the Assembly plans to vote on Thursday at noon to formally establish a special committee to ramp up the investigation of the scandal. The committee's first meeting is scheduled for 1 p.m. and Wisniewski, who will chair the committee, said subpoenas were "likely to follow thereafter."

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