TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — Gov. Chris Christie on Monday prepared to take questions for the first time in more than three weeks as his campaign sought to exceed New Jersey’s election spending cap to pay for lawyers dealing with subpoenas stemming from a political playback scandal.
Christie gave a nearly two-hour news conference Jan. 9, the day after emails were made public showing that at least one of his top aides had a role in a traffic-blocking scheme near the George Washington Bridge. Since then, he has made public appearances but not opened himself to questions, except to schoolchildren in Camden.
On Monday night, he was scheduled to appear on his “Ask the Governor” radio show on Townsquare Media, although it was not clear how much time would be given to questions on the scandal.
A special legislative investigative committee said Monday it had begun receiving documents it requested in response to 20 subpoenas it issued last month. It’s trying to unravel how high up Christie’s chain of command a lane closing order went in September and whether the operation was meant to punish a Democratic adversary.
In a request to the state Election Law Enforcement Commission, Christie’s campaign organization asked for permission to raise more money and to spend it on lawyers handling subpoenas issued by both legislative investigators and the U.S. attorney’s office.
The campaign has already spent all but $13,000 of the more than the $12.2 million limit for Christie’s re-election. Without more money, the campaign said it would not be able to answer the subpoenas.
Neither subpoena suggests the campaign “has engaged in wrongdoing,” the campaign’s lawyers said in their request.