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No, really: It’s over for Christie in 2016

MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow floated an intriguing counter-theory Thursday night for why Gov. Chris Christie’s top aides closed four lanes to the George Washington Bridge to strangle Fort Lee in traffic in September 2013. She had to go back to August 2013, when Christie exploded in a paroxysm of pettiness in an ongoing clash with state Senate Democrats about his Supreme Court picks. In one of his trademark press tantrums, he refused to reappoint a Republican judge because she would face tough sledding in the Senate, snarling at Senate Democrats, led by Fort Lee Sen. Loretta Weinberg, as “animals.”

That was the evening of Aug. 12. The morning of Aug. 13, Bridget Anne Kelly sent the eight-word torpedo that would take out Fort Lee’s main artery to the bridge (and her career): “Time for some traffic problems in Fort Lee.” Bridge official and Christie ally David Wildstein answered “Got it,” as though the concept of “traffic problems in Fort Lee” were as familiar to him as the need for more snow plows or EZPass lanes. Maddow suggested that the real trigger for the punishment was not Fort Lee Mayor Mark Sokolich’s failure to endorse Christie’s reelection, but the Fort Lee state senator’s ongoing feud with Christie, which had exploded the night before. He once told reporters to “take a bat” to the 78-year-old grandmother (figuratively, of course), and the Supreme Court battle sent Christie to a new level of rage.

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