Less than two years before Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones paid for New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s tickets and travel to NFL games, government documents show Christie personally pushed the Port Authority to approve a lucrative contract for a firm part-owned by Jones. Christie nonetheless accepted the gifts from Jones, despite New Jersey ethics rules barring gifts to public officials from persons or entities that those officials “deal with, contact, or regulate in the course of official business.”
On March 19, 2013, Christie and New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo issued a press release announcing their selection of Legends Hospitality LLC to operate the observation deck on the top floor of One World Trade Center. The next day, the Port Authority board — which is appointed by Christie and Cuomo — specifically cited the governors’ announcement in voting to approve the contract for the company, which is jointly owned by the Dallas Cowboys, New York Yankees and Checketts Partners Investment Fund.*
The Port Authority press release announcing the vote quotes Dallas Cowboys executive Jerry Jones, Jr. as saying: “We are humbled to have been chosen to operate the Observatory Deck.”
Haha. I had the over-under set at 72 hours for something like this to come out, but I underestimated reporters coming off a two-week vacation– it was about 36 hours from the end of the game on Sunday until this report. Nice job, fellas.
There were some people chiming in with the usual “Who cares what team he’s a fan of?!“ stuff on Twitter yesterday. The answer is “no one,” but I’d argue that there are three reasons why it’s, like, a thing now:
1) His motives – playing to a national audience for an anticipated Presidential bid – are more transparent than the mist over a crowded George Washington Bridge. He wears that big red sweater for
one two reasons: so he’s easy to spot on TV and because his tailor probably ran out of grey thread.
2) It’s one thing to be a fan, it’s another to throw it in the face of basically every football fan in your state. No Eagles, Giants or Jets fan appreciates their governor rubbing it in on national TV, especially when it’s so obvious that he’s doing it for ostensible future gain.
And now, 3) There’s an actual conflict of interest BECAUSE OF COURSE THERE IS! At this point I’m convinced that all rich people and politicians just weekend (v.) together doing blow and hookers and concocting ways to screw everyone else along with the hookers.
*A company jointly owned by the Cowboys and Yankees? What, do they manufacture bandwagons? HUZZUH! Thanks, I’m here all week. Be sure to tip your waiters and Jim.
Love the way the Inquirer is pushing their 10-hour old story on the ethical quandary of Christie taking Jones up on his offer which makes no mention of this recent report:
Is it legal? Is it ethical? Check out Inquirer's story on Gov. Christies free plane trips to root for Dallas Cowboys. http://t.co/0DAANDIwaZ
— Bill Marimow (@bmarimow65) January 6, 2015
Newspapers! Come check out our now completely outdated story!