A PUBLISHER WRITES: The idea that Gov. Christie should distance himself from the Hurricane Sandy relief fund because donors might expect favors is insulting.
The Hurricane Sandy New Jersey Relief Fund, headed by the governor’s wife, Mary Pat Christie, has raised $32 million, thanks in large part to big corporations — and in no small measure to countless individual donors.
Yet just as questions were raised about President Obama’s visit to New Jersey in the wake of the storm (What was he supposed to do?), we now have those who want to make political hay of a humanitarian effort.
Christie can horse-trade with the best of them. He’s appointed lots of pals to positions – including some who may not be entirely qualified.
But suggesting that he might cut a corner or dole a favor to a company for its largesse in the wake of one of the state’s worst natural disasters ever reduces the governor to a political caricature.
Even the expressions being used are sketchy: “Some people” question whether unnamed corporations might secure an inside track – to what, they don’t exactly say — while “others” look skeptically at the nonprofit fund’s board, which includes (shocker) some of Christie’s closest and most trusted friends.
Of course it does. In the wake of a disaster, at a time when folks have to move fast, who are you going to call? Strangers?
If you’re Christie, you hit up adviser Bill Palatucci, and former chief of staff Rich Bagger, and campaign mastermind Mike DuHaime – for starters.
For donations, you hit up everyone. That includes AT&T, Hess Corp. and Toys “R” Us, who contributed more than a mil each.
The fund reports donations from more than 22,000 businesses and individuals, many of whom have been identified publicly — not something every charity does.
And, still, “some” people have problems.
Just for argument’s sake, let’s say some donors are more interested in getting on the governor’s good side than in helping storm victims.
So what? The checks are already cashed.
Assuming that a quo will follow the quid is a bit of a stretch — don’t you think?
It’s interesting that not a single politician on either side of the aisle has publicly looked sideways at Christie using the power of his name to help his fellow New Jerseyans.
Tell you what: If somewhere down the line one of these donors collects a windfall, THEN you can squawk all you like.
But suggesting that Christie move away right now from what will undoubtedly be part of his legacy because of what you believe COULD happen… well ….
It makes you wonder what “some” people’s motives are.