I will protect your pensions. Nothing about your pension is going to change when I am governor. - Chris Christie, "An Open Letter to the Teachers of NJ" October, 2009

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous

Oh, dear:
The inspector general at the U.S. Justice Department issued a report Monday criticizing Christie as "the U.S. attorney who most often exceeded the government (travel-expense) rate without adequate justification" and for offering "insufficient, inaccurate or no justification" for most of the excessive costs in 2007 and 2008. 
Christie was one of "several U.S. attorneys (who) repeatedly authorized their own lodging at hotels charging more than the government rate, without documenting that the rate was actually unavailable at another hotel." 
Inspectors singled out a stay at the Four Seasons in Washington that cost more than double the approved rate of $233 per night, and took issue with Christie’s decision to pay $236 round trip for a car service in Boston instead of taking a taxi for four miles.

I think we can all agree that this is obviously:

- A politically motivated use of the Justice Department, the sort of which Chris Christie would NEVER have engaged in during his tenure there:
Christie was similarly criticized for his 2007 recommendation of the appointment of The Ashcroft Group, a consulting firm owned by Christie's former superior, the former United States Attorney General John Ashcroft, as a monitor in a court settlement against Zimmer Holdings, an Indiana medical supplies company. The no-bid contract was worth between $28 million and $52 million.[24][25] Christie defended the decision, saying that Ashcroft’s prominence and legal acumen made him a natural choice. Christie declined to intercede when Zimmer's company lawyers protested the Group’s plans to charge a rate of $1.5 million to $2.9 million per month for the monitoring.[20][26] Shortly after the House Judiciary Committee began holding hearings on the matter, the Justice Department re-wrote the rules regarding the appointment of court monitors.[27]

- Little more than living in the past, something Chris Christie NEVER does:
Speaking before a Republican crowd of about 1,000 in Indianapolis, N.J. Gov. Chris Christie calls his New Jersey predecessor - Jon Corzine - the "quintessential limousine liberal democrat" and he offers more detail about how Christie says Corzine used wire transfers at 10:30 on the morning of Christie's inauguration to give some presents "Jersey style" to friends in Democratic strongholds across the state and help turn a $500 million surplus into a $2.2 billion deficit.
- Lots of worry about a relatively small amount of money, which is something Chris Christie NEVER engages in:
Dolan said Christie's call to cap superintendent salaries, which would result in a roughly $20,000 pay cut, would not deliver savings to local taxpayers or plug the budget gap caused by Christie's decision in March to cut state aid to Westfield by $4.22 million.

"With all of the tools in the toolkit, when I look at them with the budget being cut by $4.2 million, I am looking to find $4.2 million," Dolan said. "This would give us $20,000."
I think I speak for all the trolls at nj.com in saying that it is completely unreasonable to ask a man of Chris Christie's obvious talents and stature to stay at a hotel of lesser quality than the Four Seasons. He has obviously earned the right to have you and I pay for his chocolates on the pillow. It's very hard work vilifying the people who guide our youth and make less than $60K a year doing so; he needs his beauty sleep.

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