Christie fires aide, apologizes for traffic jams

CHRISTIE

CHRISTIE

By Angela Delli Santi and Steve Peoples

Associated Press

TRENTON, N.J. – New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie has fired a top aide who engineered political payback against a town mayor, saying she lied.

Deputy Chief of Staff Bridget Anne Kelly is the latest casualty in a widening scandal that threatens to upend Christie’s second term and likely run for president in 2016. Documents show she arranged traffic jams to punish the mayor, who didn’t endorse Christie for re-election.

The governor announced her firing Thursday, saying she lied to him and he is “embarrassed and humiliated.”

A day earlier, emails and texts surfaced that linked Kelly to the gridlock, along with other top Christie aides. The messages show that they closed traffic lanes, creating backups in the town of Fort Lee.

The governor has denied knowing about the lane closings and previously said no one on his staff was involved.