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By ARep | February 7th, 2013 - 5:12pm
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RIBLE: WHERE WAS THE DEMS’ CONCERN FOR OVERSIGHT WITH OTHER TAXPAYER DOLLARS?

Responding to Assembly Democrat Budget Chairman Vincent Prieto’s call to subpoena State Treasurer Andrew Sidamon-Eristoff to testify before the committee regarding Hurricane Sandy relief funding, Assembly Republican Conference Leader David Rible, R-Monmouth and Ocean, issued the following statement:

“There is always a need for transparency during any process when public funds are expended, including the rebuilding process in the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy. That is why Governor Christie appointed “Storm Czar” Marc Frenzen. I agree taxpayers deserve answers – which they have received from Governor Christie and his administration.

“What is objectionable is the chairman’s statement that the Treasurer has insulted the people of New Jersey. I don’t recall the outrage from the Democrats when billions of taxpayer dollars were wasted under the defunct Schools Construction Corp. (SCC), despite the fact that the first six schools built by the SCC cost, on average, 45 percent more than schools built by local boards of education in 2005. At the same time, the corporation also paid its construction managers triples the standard rate. There was no expressed outrage from the Democrats during that era.

“The same concern for oversight also was not expressed by the Democrats when funds for the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) were disbursed in 2008-09, nor were any oversight hearings held. Chairman Prieto says that ‘legislative oversight and checks-and-balances are cornerstones of our democracy,’ but that applies regardless of who is governor. This latest tirade is motivated purely by politics.”

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"Christie’s method for coping with scandal has been more complicated. In January, the seemingly-local issue of lane closings on the George Washington Bridge, which created a massive traffic jam in the Hudson River town of Fort Lee, became one of national interest when it was revealed that one of Christie’s closest staffers had ordered them—for what looked like political retribution against a Democratic mayor. The scandal was quickly dubbed 'Bridgegate,' and unfortunately for Christie, it played into his reputation as a bully. Christie's response was to act unlike himself: humble." - Olivia Nuzzi

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