A senior aide to New Jersey Governor Chris Christie subpoenaed in the ongoing investigations of lane closings on the George Washington Bridge has resigned. Christina Genovese Renna, who reported directly to former Deputy Chief of Staff Bridget Kelly, said in a statement she had been considering the move since November.
Renna, one of the seventeen individuals subpoenaed by the New Jersey Legislature, told the Associated Press through her attorney that she left “to pursue an opportunity in the private sector” and that it was normal for staffers to consider the move after a successful reelection bid, according to NBC New York.
Renna reported to Kelly, whose infamous email to former Port Authority figure David Wildstein, “time for some traffic problems in Fort Lee,” cost her her job last month.
News 12 reports that Renna resigned on Friday–“the same day she received a subpoena.”
It was also the same day that the New York Times published a letter from the attorney of former Port Authority head David Wildstein alleging that “evidence exists” showing that Christie knew of the lane closings. Christie responded to the allegation that Wildstein, who personally closed the lanes on the George Washington Bridge to Fort Lee, NJ last September, had new evidence in a message sent to supporters. Christie’s office asserts that Wildstein “will do and say anything to save David Wildstein,” citing some incidents from when Wildstein was a teenager. Wildstein and Christie attended the same high school, though Christie alleged that they did not spend much time together because Christie was an “athlete.”
On Meet the Press last Sunday, the head of the New Jersey Legislature’s investigation into the bridge closings, Assemblyman John Wisniewski, told David Gregory that he did not see any such evidence in the 900 pages that Wildstein has submitted to the committee so far. “We don’t really know what the evidence is,” he explained, adding that the evidence’s absence “raises questions of what he has and why doesn’t the committee have it.”
Renna, meanwhile, is believed to be one of the many parties subpoenaed requesting extensions to submit documents demanded of them due today. The relationship between Renna’s evidence and Wildstein’s is pivotal to uncovering whether the trail leads straight to the top of the government. Renna’s documents during the last investigation on the matter uncovered a number of emails forwarded to her from Kelly that involved Wildstein. Both parties are required to hand over any evidence they have by law.
Wildstein does not have the unilateral right to withhold evidence that incriminates Christie, but if he does not hand over anything especially incriminating–and, as his lawyer only claims that “evidence exists” and not that he has it, this is possible–and Renna hands over evidence absolving Christie, Wildstein could be deeper in trouble.
The information the public knows now is that Kelly, Renna’s former boss, ordered Wildstein to hatch a scheme to create a traffic jam in Fort Lee for as-yet-unconfirmed reasons. Wildstein went with shutting down the George Washington Bridge personally. Wildstein was photographed with Christie on the first day of bridge closings.