Chris Christie Hit With Ethics Complaint For Bogarting the New Jersey Shoreline

Image via Getty.
Image via Getty.

Over the weekend, photos of New Jersey Governor Chris Christie enjoying the beach with his family infuriated constituents, to whom beaches were closed over the Fourth of July thanks to a government shutdown over a budget dispute. Though Christie probably couldn’t care less, he’s now being hit by an official complaint with the State Ethics Commission.

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NJ.com reports that West New York attorney Mario M. Blanch lodged his complaint based on the “Plain Language Guide to New Jersey’s Executive Branch Ethics Standards,” which states that no one in the executive branch can obtain a “special benefit” because of their position:

“The governor and his family hold no special privileges over the residents and citizens of the state of New Jersey,” the complaint says. “By using the park, ‘in direct contravention to the shutdown,’ (Christie) utilized his position as governor ... to obtain benefits for himself and his family that members of the general public could not enjoy for themselves.”

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Since Christie straight-up told reporters, “Run for governor, and you can have a residence there,” in regards to his time on Island Beach State Park, it’s fair to say he used his position to get a private beach weekend.

The decision to shut down state parks and beaches was a huge inconvenience to the good people of New Jersey: a Cub Scout group had to break camp and leave Cheesequake State Park; planned fireworks displays had to be suddenly moved; and a 5k fundraiser for the Special Olympics was cancelled, which cost them an estimated $40,000 in donations.

Blanch told NJ.com that, like everyone else, he was enraged by the photos of Christie enjoying himself to detriment of the state. He wants the ethics committee to force Christie to “pay restitution in an amount of the fair market value of renting a private beach in New Jersey during the July Fourth weekend.”

“The governor’s actions are unfair, outrageous, and completely unethical,” Blanch said. “Gov. Christie should plop himself somewhere else, because New Jersey does not need politicians who only care about themselves.”

Contributing Writer, writing my first book for the Dial Press called The Lonely Hunter, follow me on Twitter @alutkin

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DISCUSSION

thenoblerenard
The Noble Renard

What is truly amazing is that Christie still has a 17% approval rating. It’s a good way to think about Trump’s roughly 37% approval rating; there are people who so greatly identify with the outside figure who is not the “usual politician” that they will cling to these figures with such great force that even the most blatant contempt from these figures for the general populace doesn’t dissuade them from their love. These are the people who Trump said would support him even if he shot someone on Fifth Avenue, and he was right.