January 20th, 2014
10:09 AM ET
3 months ago

New Jersey Lt. Gov.: Hoboken allegations are 'offensive to me'

(CNN) – New Jersey Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno denied "whole-heartedly" allegations Monday that she gave Hoboken's mayor an ultimatum to support a private redevelopment plan backed by Gov. Chris Christie in order to receive Hurricane Sandy recovery aid.

"Mayor Zimmer's version of our conversation in May of 2013 is not only false but is illogical and does not withstand scrutiny when all of the facts are examined. Any suggestion that Sandy funds were tied to the approval of any project in New Jersey is completely false," she said at a Martin Luther King Jr. holiday event in Union Beach, New Jersey.

Guadagno's remarks were the first time a senior Christie official addressed the charges Hoboken Mayor Dawn Zimmer first made Saturday on MSNBC and detailed to CNN on Sunday.

Zimmer claims that Guadagno told her to support a redevelopment project backed by Christie or lose Sandy recovery funds. Zimmer, a Democrat, also said she was told the threat came directly from the Republican governor.

Hoboken was one of the cities hit hardest by the 2012 hurricane, which ravaged the eastern seaboard, destroying an estimated $100 million worth of property

But Guadagno said Monday such a suggestion is "wholly and completely false."

"Standing in Union Beach as we are today with some of the mayors whose towns were devastated by Sandy, and also being a Sandy victim myself, makes the mayor's allegations particularly offensive to me," she continued.

The lieutenant governor said she thought she had a good relationship with the mayor, saying they had met in Hoboken three months after the May 2013 conversation.

"Frankly I'm surprised that Mayor Zimmer has chosen to mischaracterize a conversation I had with her about development and job creation in Hoboken," she said.

Refusing to take any questions, Guadagno closed her remarks by reiterating that she denies any suggestions that "there was every any condition...on the release of Sandy funds by me."

"I am sure–absolutely sure–that the facts will come out," she said.

Read more about the allegations

- CNN's Chris Frates, Leigh Ann Caldwell and Jason Seher contributed to this report.


Filed under: Chris Christie • New Jersey
soundoff (55 Responses)
  1. jenn,philadelphia

    The mayor says Hoboken only received $300,000 in Sandy aid. The governor's office says they received almost $70 million. Should be easy to prove one or the other and then we know who's lying.

    January 20, 2014 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  2. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Frankly I'm surprised that Mayor Zimmer has chosen to mischaracterize a conversation I had with her about development and job creation in Hoboken," she said.

    Refusing to take any questions, Guadagno closed her remarks
    -------------------------------------------------
    "Mischaracterized". Hmm.
    And she refused to take any questions. Well I guess not everybody can be a Christie and swat away at questions when one comes under fire.
    Here's the thing though, perhaps Ms. Guadgno has learned from the good Governor that if one's behavior is questionable it might be best NOT to take any questions until one can lawyer up, like the good Governor has ultimately done.
    Who's paying for that lawyer btw?

    January 20, 2014 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  3. Thomas

    Refusing to take any questions, Guadagno closed her remarks by reiterating that she denies any suggestions that "there was every any condition...on the release of Sandy funds by me."

    Take the fifth and get a good lawyer !

    January 20, 2014 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  4. michael

    These conservative patriots for the Bengazi murders are not patriots at all! There are conservative neocon opportunist! Where their outrage, inflammatory rhetoric, disgust and anger, when we invaded Iraq on a fabrication, lie and so defense contractors like Halliberton could profit billions! We lost over 4,000 American lives, over 58,000 wounded and maimed, over 100,000 civilian casualties "I did not hear outrage from one conservative only support from Bush) Also, Bush and his cabinet received many warnings and intelligence about possible attack on our homeland and ignored them, the result was 9/11, no prosecutions, no one held accountable for the greatest attack from outside our borders in history. But, now we are supposed to jump through hoops over conservative socalled outrage over the loss of 4 Americans! What we get is sensationalism and political hypocrisy with support of the media! Americans are not stupid there is no comparison! First hold Bush and his cronies accountable then will I listen to your screams of outrage!

    January 20, 2014 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  5. sifto

    rs.."what difference, at this point, does it make" that someone had to wait a couple hours at a bridge on the East Coast?

    January 20, 2014 11:42 am at 11:42 am |
  6. Silence DoGood

    @cd
    Where's the story of where Obama was the night Benghazi was being riddeled with gunfire for over SIX HOURS. Where was our "Commander In Chief". Waiting for that story for over a YEAR now!
    -----
    Thanks for staying on topic. You forgot birth certificate, Obama's religion, Big Foot and space aliens.

    January 20, 2014 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  7. The right wing have lost their damned minds

    jinx9to88

    Refusing to take any questions, Guadagno closed her remarks by reiterating that she denies any suggestions that "there was every any condition...on the release of Sandy funds by me." Funny how Zimmer is willing to take oath and testify but Christies mob is not answering questions. If Christie did not give the order to close the bridge then why won't his staff talk?

    January 20, 2014 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
    -------------------------------------------------–

    Bingo!!! Not only that, they also need to investigate if Christie also spent some of the money to run 2 expensive elections to keep Corey Bookers name off the same ballot with him...Hmmmmm..More to come @ 11:00

    January 20, 2014 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  8. Wake up People!

    Amen Michael!! Too bad they won't let me say that.

    January 20, 2014 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  9. Rudy NYC

    sifto

    can they prove that she hand-wrote that "diary entry" before last week?
    -------------------------–
    They actually could, if you so wish. The Christie administration has no alternate explanation as to why the lion's share of the money has yet to reach Hoboken.

    Why am I not surprised to hear about Republicans using tax dollars as private investment money? What's worse, is that those private investors harvest capital gains from it, and lower income tax rate to boot. Just think, Repubilcans like Paul Ryan want to do away with capital gains altogether.

    January 20, 2014 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  10. Lynda/Minnesota

    "The mayor says Hoboken only received $300,000 in Sandy aid. The governor's office says they received almost $70 million. Should be easy to prove one or the other and then we know who's lying."

    There seems to be a questionable suggestion that the one (Hoboken's mayor) is talking "relief funding" and the governor's office is talking "insurance settlements". So, yes, I agree. This should be easy for the governors office to list where the $70 million in relief funding WAS distributed to Hoboken. One hopes that the governor's office HAS kept detailed records. The sooner this information is released, the better. Indeed. To do so would help settle the matter.

    January 20, 2014 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  11. Rudy NYC

    cd wrote:

    Where's the story of where Obama was the night Benghazi was being riddeled with gunfire for over SIX HOURS. Where was our "Commander In Chief". Waiting for that story for over a YEAR now!
    _______________
    Don't be stupid. You will never find out where the President was on the night of the 9/11 anniversary? Ditto for most of his senior staff, cabinet members, and the leading members of Congress.

    January 20, 2014 11:57 am at 11:57 am |
  12. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Stop with your Benghazi nonsense, try reality for a change and try to stay focused on the events at hand.
    -------------------------------------------------
    Reality is hard for right-wingers to take these past 7-8 years rs, so they have created an alternate world they can escape to. A world comprised of non-troversies and millions wasted on political witch hunts that haven't paid off like Benghazi, IRS, Fast and Furious and NSA.
    RWNJs steadfastly refuse to stay focused on the topic at hand because it would mean recognizing that their Great White Hope (or Moby Dick like Donna refers to him) for 2016 is sinking faster than the Titanic amidst allegations supported by e-mails, and enough smoke emanating from accusations of misuse of office to start a forest fire in a rain forest.

    January 20, 2014 11:57 am at 11:57 am |
  13. Malory Archer

    sifto
    rs.."what difference, at this point, does it make" that someone had to wait a couple hours at a bridge on the East Coast?sifto
    rs.."what difference, at this point, does it make" that someone had to wait a couple hours at a bridge on the East Coast?

    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Right on sifto! This is about much more than a bridge closure, and appears to have political shakedown written all over it. While Christie himself may not be directly involved, that so many from his inner circle are involved certainly seems to imply that he fosters that culture within his administration.

    January 20, 2014 11:59 am at 11:59 am |
  14. current state of the union

    Sifto, put down the " drink", take off your hat ( tinfoil), and breath, in case you missed it, there is no benghazi scandal. Obama didn't make it happen. Years later, what do you got, nothing. Your inability to apply equal judgement is long gone, ......something about sheep

    January 20, 2014 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  15. ChrisM

    Easy solution. Have the Lt Gov talk to the Feds and take a polygraph test just like the Mayor of Hoboken did and said she would take the test

    January 20, 2014 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  16. current state of the union

    The difference between benghazi and bridge gate is one was committed by terrorists outside the u.s.a..

    January 20, 2014 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm |
  17. current state of the union

    Get the feeling were going to find out soon why Christie hired a legal team? Can't wait to see the contracts he made with the money, the shredder has been working overtime, I'm sure.

    January 20, 2014 12:15 pm at 12:15 pm |
  18. Thomas

    Chris Christie / Ted Cruz 2016

    Real Leaders with Common Sense ?

    January 20, 2014 12:15 pm at 12:15 pm |
  19. Silence DoGood

    (joke alert) Since this sounds like Conspiracy Monday: I bet Obama had the bridge built years ago just to cause this crisis. And then had his space alien friends cause the hurricane. I will bet money a right wing knee jerk comment will agree with me.

    January 20, 2014 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  20. current state of the union

    The truth is like kryptonite to the gop.

    January 20, 2014 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  21. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Malory Archer
    While Christie himself may not be directly involved,
    -------------------------------------------------
    Oh for Pete's sakes Malory, everybody is tip-toeing around what most of us are thinking that being that the only reason why we cannot find a direct connect (well except for the Hoboken allegations) to the big guy is because he's not stupid.
    Why would someone who used to be state attorney be dumb enough to leave a paper trail of e-mails, memos etc when all he has to do is state what he wants done?
    I would be shocked if he was sloppy enough to leave something behind that would directly connect him to all of these political strong-arming, but I am not shocked that he has been abusing his power and position in New Jersey.
    Being labeled a bully for so long didn't materialize out of thin air.
    We're minding our p's and q's and making sure that ALL the facts are in before we jump to the obvious conclusions lest the RWNJ's on this thread accuse us of what they are already accusing us of.
    Well I'm taking a dip in the cesspool and I'm saying there's too much smoke around Moby Dick (thanks Donna) for there not to be a forest fire.

    January 20, 2014 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  22. Name jk. Sfl. GOP CRUZ lee&rubio 24billion dallar LOSS of your tax money conservatives,the garbage of America.

    Sure,we will take the word of the crooked GOP politians. The dirt will keep coming out just like the GOP stooge and crook Issas hearings aren't a GOP smear campaign AGAINEST dems .issa just makes the GOP look like the morons they are and have no credibility like the rest of the GOP scams and mis information!!!!

    January 20, 2014 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  23. Wake up People!

    @Silence DoGood.....

    Hilarious!!! I'm enjoying your comments this morning!!

    January 20, 2014 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |
  24. Lynda/Minnesota

    "I would be shocked if he was sloppy enough to leave something behind that would directly connect him to all of these political strong-arming, but I am not shocked that he has been abusing his power and position in New Jersey."

    Well stated. I would also be shocked if the GOP continues to support him. Why they did in the first place is beyond me.

    Co-signing your comment.

    January 20, 2014 12:43 pm at 12:43 pm |
  25. Tommy G

    This mayor of Hoboken is a Democrat. She's lying becasue if she really had anything, she would have gone to the press before the election. Almost all Democrats are lying scum as Obama has proven with his Liar of the Year award.

    January 20, 2014 12:44 pm at 12:44 pm |
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