LET’S PLAY DUMBBELL: A typical scam!

FRIDAY, APRIL 11, 2014

Part 5—Concerning the Mastro report: A person can get extremely dumb watching the cable show Hardball.

Dumbing down viewers isn’t just for Fox News any more! Consider what Hardball viewers were told last week about the Mastro report.

Also, consider what got withheld.

Chris Matthews discussed the Mastro report on Monday and Tuesday nights of last week. On each occasion, he gave the impression that his producers had dug up amazing material in the four thousand pages of supporting materials which were released along with the Mastro report itself.

Below, you see one excerpt from the Monday night show. For fuller excerpts, see yesterday’s report.

In the passage shown below, Matthews is speaking with Heather Haddon, a Wall Street Journal reporter whose editors should be concerned by the way she behaves on Hardball. As usual, Matthews is working a con:
HADDON (3/31/14): We went through all 4,000 pages of the exhibits, and there are some really interesting tidbits in there that you don’t get just by reading the report itself. And one of the things that came out was, what you were referring to, is some campaign e-mails.

So one interesting thing right in the beginning is they talk about a target list of Democrats that they were looking to woo and court for endorsements. And when—we’ve reported on this before. The campaign was very careful to say that the Democrats endorsed them voluntarily. This would seem to indicate there was at least some effort to really get these endorsements.

MATTHEWS: This is key! This is key! This is key, that there was, in fact, a backdrop to why people like Bridget Kelly and Wildstein would try to punish or push or whatever, manipulate, the mayor of Fort Lee.

Here it is! The Mastro report rejects any notion that there was a culture of political retaliation. But documents buried deep within the report raise questions about those conclusions.

In one, we learn that Christie’s campaign did keep a list of approved targets. These were Democratic mayors they wanted to endorse the governor, including Fort Lee mayor Mark Sokolich.

HADDON: Right. Right.
It’s true! Christie’s staff maintained lists of Democratic mayors from whom they hoped to gain endorsements.

As far as we know, no one in Team Christie ever denied that the Christie campaign pursued Democratic endorsements. Christie himself has said as much, at some length.

That said, did we really learn this fact from a “document buried deep within the report,” possibly in those four thousand pages of exhibits?

Actually no, we did not. The initial target list of 21 Democratic mayors is first mentioned on page 2 of the Mastro report, at the start of the executive summary. This target list is discussed in detail in the body of the report, starting on page 51.

No one dug this information out, as Hardball viewers were told for two nights. No one found it buried somewhere. This information is prominently featured in the Mastro report. The first mention comes on page 2.

(For the relevant text from page 2 and page 51, see this earlier report.)

As usual, misimpressions and misinformation ran wild as Matthews pretended to stage a discussion. At the same time, basic information was being withheld from Hardball viewers.

That may explain a peculiar moment during Tuesday’s charade.

In the passage shown below, Matthews continues to give the impression that he and his staff found information “buried in the report” or perhaps in its supporting materials. Assemblyman John Wisniewski then authors a bit of a charade of his own.

At this point, MSNBC contributor Brian Murphy makes a peculiar statement. Needless to say, Matthews doesn’t ask him to explain:
MATTHEWS (4/1/14): Remember how they said—Mastro, the chief attorney here, who said, “Well, we couldn’t find a motive?” And then we realized that buried in the report is approved targets, exactly what we’ve been talking about from the beginning, that there was some kind of targeting of the mayor of Fort Lee for some kind of whatever, pressure, payback, whatever, revenge.

And there you have him, number two on the list of people that are going to be targeted. What kind of a motive is this guy looking for, this prosecutor—this defense attorney in this case?

WISNIEWSKI: Well, clearly, this was a political operation. When we look at all of the connections, we see that Mayor Sokolich was somebody that they sought an endorsement from. Mayor Sokolich was somebody who didn’t deliver an endorsement. And there was clearly a lot of disappointment within the Team Christie that was involved in trying to secure that endorsement.

And what this report shows is that that disappointment manifested itself with a lot of bad language, at least, and raises the suspicion of what happened with the bridge and was that related to their disappointment in not getting the endorsement from Mayor Sokolich.

[...]

MURPHY: I’m not convinced that the whole bridge operation has something to do with Sokolich not endorsing. But clearly, there’s something—they’re unhappy with Mark Sokolich, and there’s some kind of trigger. And though they’re not really expecting to get his endorsement by that point, they’re clearly willing to squeeze people who they’ve, who they think they have a relationship and who they think they have some leverage over.
When people like Wisniewski play Hardball, they will sometimes end up dissembling right along with their host. In this passage, Wisniewski worries about “a lot of bad language” even as he fails to mention significant, relevant information in the Mastro report.

This brings us to Murphy’s statements:

“I’m not convinced that the whole bridge operation has something to do with Sokolich not endorsing?”

“They’re not really expecting to get his endorsement by that point?”

Why in the world did Murphy say that? What was he talking about?

Needless to say, Matthews didn’t ask. He and Wisniewski were pushing the notion that they had uncovered the fact that Sokolich’s endorsement was sought, and that this supports the initial theory about the motive for the lane closings.

Alas! The fact that Sokolich’s endorsement was sought appears on page 2 of the Mastro report! It is discussed in detail starting on page 51.

But why did Murphy say what he did? Why did he say he isn’t convinced that the lane closings were caused by the lack of an endorsement?

We can’t answer that question, of course; Matthews didn’t ask his guest to explain his statement. But the likely explanation is this: Murphy was simply reacting to the report, which includes apparent new information about the Christie campaign’s pursuit of that endorsement.

With the use of supporting documents, this chronology is presented in the Mastro report:

According to the Mastro report, Sokolich was on an initial “target list of 21 Democratic mayors” from whom the Christie campaign sought endorsements. But according to the report, the campaign learned that Sokolich wasn’t going to give an endorsement in March 2013.

According to the report, Sokolich was removed from subsequent target lists. Despite his failure to endorse, he seemed to remain in the good graces of the Christie administration, according to the report. (Evidence is offered.)

Bridget Kelly’s famous email to David Wildstein was sent in August 2013, almost five months later. On the basis of that chronology, the Mastro report expresses doubt that the failure to endorse was the motive for the lane closings.

We will guess that this chronology explains Murphy’s statement. But alas! If you were watching Hardball last week, you were never told about the chronology presented in the Mastro report. You didn’t see anyone try to evaluate that chronology.

Simply put, the basic contents of the Mastro report were withheld from Hardball viewers. Instead, viewers were handed one of Matthews’ familiar, typical scams.

In the passage shown above, Matthews seems baffled by Mastro’s failure to name a motive for the animus aimed at Sokolich. He then pretends that he found the actual motive “buried in the report” in those target lists.

This familiar type of scam has always driven Hardball. The program has always worked this way, going back to the bad old years when Matthews was dissembling, lying and issuing insults in his dogged attempts to slime both Clintons and Candidate Gore, apparently in service to his conservative owner, Jack Welch, the man who made Matthews quite wealthy.

Citizens never hear about this gross misconduct because of the press corps’ Code of Silence. Within the guild, everyone knows they must never discuss the things this con man does.

An even sillier moment occurred on last Tuesday’s Hardball. In this case, Wisniewski seemed to cover for Matthews’ trademark cluelessness.

Yes, this foolishness really occurred. Note Wisniewski’s highlighted statement:
MATTHEWS (4/1/14): Let me go back to Assemblyman Wisniewski. This to me is the question that jumps out at me.

I have a lot of respect for the governor of New York, Andrew Cuomo. And this story keeps percolating in my head. A conversation occurred in which the governor of New Jersey, your governor, called upon the governor of New York to basically call off the probe. He didn’t like all this push from the other side of the bridge commission people—

WISNIEWSKI: Right.

MATTHEWS: —going into this thing. He didn’t like Foye’s attitude. Do you think there is any way you guys can ask the governor of New York to testify before your legislative committee and find out what happened in that conversation? Because it’s critical.

WISNIEWSKI: Chris, that’s one of the major components of this investigation that we’ve yet to fully examine. But we have to look at those facts. We have to look at whether or not that conversation happened, and what was said.

But what’s really disturbing here is every time we turn over one set of facts, we see that there are more unanswered questions, such as the one you just pointed out.
What we need to have is, this is—let’s be fair. This is not just about Chris Christie. This is about whether there was an abuse of power, how it could happen, and how do we prevent it from happening again.

But what we see in the Mastro report is almost a definite attempt to shut down the inquiry so that nobody looks any further. And that’s very troubling.
Matthews mentioned a “story” which “keeps percolating in his head.” He then described a phone conversation between Governors Christie and Cuomo.

But how odd! Wisniewski said, “We have to look at whether or not that conversation happened, and what was said.”

If that conversation didn’t happen, we feel sure that nothing was said. Wisniewski, of course, was working around Matthews’ cluelessness.

Duh. Governor Christie denied, long ago, that such a conversation took place. The next day, Governor’s Cuomo’s spokesman, Matt Wing, supported what Christie said.

It’s possible that both governors are lying, of course. But more than three months later, there’s still no sign that Matthews has heard that Governor Cuomo, who he respects, supported Governor’s Christie’s account of this story—the story which keeps percolating in Matthews’ pathetic head.

In many ways, the Mastro report is very poor work. On the positive side, it does seem to present new facts about the attempt to gain Sokolich’s endorsement.

If you watched MSNBC last week, that rather detailed chronology was completely disappeared. You weren’t told that this apparent new information even exists.

Instead, you heard a bunch of bullshit about the way information was found deep within the supporting materials—information which first appears on page 2 of the report.

What kind of society tolerates a person of Matthews’ extremely low type? It’s very easy to get very dumb watching this bad person’s program. Also this:

The Code of Silence is strong. In a world ruled by people like Matthews, it’s very easy to get dishonest in “journalism” careers.

Still to come: Matthews and David Brock

26 comments:

  1. "As far as we know, no one in Team Christie ever denied that the Christie campaign pursued Democratic endorsements. Christie himself has said as much, at some length."

    Democratic endorsements or Sokolich's endorsement?

    Recall Christie's famous "sad, embarrassed" press conference when he claimed Sokolich "wasn't on my radar" and that Christie "couldn't pick him out of a lineup" until recently seeing his picture in the paper.

    Later, when it was disclosed that Sokolich was wined and dined at a very exclusive governor's mansion luncheon with a handful of other Democratic mayors, Christie's spokesperson, Kevin Roberts, specifically said this.

    "The hosting of local elected officials at all levels and from both parties has been a regular occurrence at Drumthwacket. I'll otherwise refer you to the governor’s own extensive comments on this in which he makes it clear that he didn’t recall Mayor Sokolich and the endorsement wasn’t on his radar."

    So Christie denied seeking the endorsement of Sokolich, even though his name appears on a list of Democratic mayors whose endorsement would be sought.

    Ah, but Bob would argue! This was NOT the "Christie campaign". This would be the governor's staff!

    True, Bob. The govenor's staff, according to the infallible Mastro Report, was actively doing campaign work BEFORE his campaign committee was formed and Stepien left the governor's office in April to run it.

    Thus we have the foot-in-mouth problem of Mastro saying Sokolich told staffers "no dice" on the endorsement waaaay back in March, thus the non-endorsement was a non-factor in the subsequent September "traffic problems in Fort Lee."

    Instead, the recently "behested" Kelly the screws-loose Wildstein came up, all on their own, to target Sokolich for "ulterior motives" other than the election that the intrepid Mastro could not ferret out.


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    1. Look at the chronology. It will tell you what the status of Sokolich's endorsement decision was at the point when Christie made those statements. IIRC, Sokolich had already made it clear he would not endorse, which would make Christie statement about not seeking his endorsement true. Look at the dates on the list. The list evolved and Sokolich was on it at one point, then no longer on it after he said he would not endorse. This happened at different points in time, so it matters when the questions were asked.

      Delete
    2. "This happened at different points in time, so it matters when the questions were asked."

      Pure unadulterated bullshit. Chronology has nothing to do with it. Christie categorically denied even knowing who Sokolich was.

      Delete
    3. Christie didn't deny knowing who Sokolich was. He no doubt knew he was Mayor of Ft. Lee. He denied knowing Sokolich personally or caring about him sufficiently to engage in a revenge plot against him. Taking words so literally as to play "gotcha" works against mutual understanding. It is a game, not communication.

      Delete
    4. What you're saying is total intellectual dishonesty.

      ***********
      GOV. CHRISTIE: Well, listen, again, let me say this: Clearly, that's the tone of those emails. But the thing that -- the other part of this that just shocks me is as I've said to you all many times before, Mayor Sokolich was never on my radar screen. He was never mentioned to me as somebody whose endorsement we were even pursuing. And in fact, I think he said on CNN last night that he doesn't recall ever being asked for his endorsement. So part of this is I never saw this as political retribution because I didn't think he did anything to us.

      Now, we pursued lots of endorsements during the campaign from Democrats, and we didn't receive most of them. We received about 60 at the end of the day.

      We pursued hundreds.

      And so I never -- I don't have any recollection of at any time, anybody in the campaign ever asking me to meet with Mayor Sokolich or call him, which was the typical course that was used when we were attempting to get an endorsement. The staff would work with the elected official first, and then, when they thought, using the vernacular, the ball was on the tee, they would call me in to make a phone call or have a meeting or a breakfast, and I would then meet with the elected official and see if I could bring it over the line.

      I don't remember ever meeting Mayor Sokolich in that -- certainly I never did in that context. I don't ever -- I'm sure I met him at some point in an event in Bergen County, but I have to tell you, until I saw his picture last night on television, I wouldn't have been able to pick him out of a lineup. And so part of this is -- the reason that the retribution idea never came into my head is because I never even knew that we were pursuing his endorsement, and no one ever came to me to get me to try to pursue the endorsement in any way, so I never saw it as a serious effort.
      *****************

      Never.
      Could pick him out of a lineup.
      Never pursued his endorsement.

      Delete
    5. Could NOT pick him out of a lineup.

      Delete
  2. Where can we find the famous "Code of Silence" Bob refers to so often? deadrat? Cecelia? David in Cal? A. Perez? Matt in Crown? mm? KZ? Anybody?

    ReplyDelete
  3. You can find the code in the refusal of liberal talkers, pundits, and bloggers to discuss Chris Matthews' trashing of Al Gore.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. They are also refusing to talk about how Hillary Clinton was treated in 2008.

      Delete
  4. OMB (Let's Play DumbBOB)

    Where BOB fishes to find out how dumb you really are!

    Today BOB, in Part 5, tells you this about the Mastro Report:

    With the use of supporting documents, this chronology is presented in the Mastro report:

    "According to the Mastro report, Sokolich was on an initial “target list of 21 Democratic mayors” from whom the Christie campaign sought endorsements. But according to the report, the campaign learned that Sokolich wasn’t going to give an endorsement in March 2013.

    According to the report, Sokolich was removed from subsequent target lists. Despite his failure to endorse, he seemed to remain in the good graces of the Christie administration, according to the report. (Evidence is offered.)"


    Yesterday, in Part 4, BOB revealed this about himself:

    "Let’s correct one thrilling statement before we quit for the day. There is nothing in the supporting documents, or anywhere else, in which anyone is “talking how they’re going to rough up people like Mayor Zimmer if she doesn’t play ball.”

    Nothing even dimly like that is found in the (very hazy) report in the Bergen Record. Presumably, nothing even dimly like that like that can be found in the four thousand pages of documents, which don’t seem to exist on line."

    We, of course, in an effort to answer the question posed at the beginning of this comment, are responsilbe for putting the bold highlights on BOB's quotes.

    If you get our drifts, you are smarter than BOB. If you don't, BOB was including you when he wrote "We the People are dumb."

    We'll have more on "evidence is offered" and "doesn't seem to exist online" later. Perhaps even in Real Time.

    KZ

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    1. "Presumably, nothing even dimly like that like that can be found in the four thousand pages of documents, which don’t seem to exist on line."

      Presumably? Bob doesn't know? Has he even read the 4,000 pages since he makes some sort of point noting the no access online?

      If he has not read the documents, how can he "presume" to know what is and isn't in them?

      Very interesting! Bob seems to be speculating far beyond the known evidence.

      We've all been told how awful it is to do such a thing. Why, rubes and lizard brains might be led. Western civilization could collapse.

      Delete
  5. 444 do you even realize there's a new pope?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Papal Bull comes nowhere near Bob Bull. Bob Bull roars!

      Delete
  6. OMB (Let's Play DumbBOB)

    What had come over BOBfandom. Trolls got your tongues?

    How Dumb is BOB? As promised:

    The Mastro Report ""doesn't seem to exist online" said BOB yesterday. Really, BOB? Nexis let you down. Try Google. You know Google don't you BOB. Barney Google? He is the first character named in the Snuffy Smith comic strip you attacked Chris Matthews for mentioning.

    Google "Report to the Office of the Governor of New Jersey" That is the title of the report. It will give you the link to this:

    http://gdcreport.com/

    GDC are the initials of the law firm, BOB.

    Now that we have posted a link on BOB's site, let us see if he wants to correct anything in the next couple of days. You know, things under the category of "Evidence is Offered." We think people might find the footnotes to the report which list the exhibits quite often turn up documents that don't exactly corroborate the assertions of the report.

    Does that surprise anyone? Surely even BOB would not really be surprised. Unless he believes his own twaddle and has some screws loose. Like someone we could mention.

    KZ

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    Replies
    1. OMB and dearie us. Did we imply BOB said the report was not online? If so we erred and wish to make it clear. BOB said the documents "don't seem to exist online." Keyword seems a word fondly called a weasel word.
      We will call it a cover your ass word here.

      Hint for reading the documents. The report has footnotes. The footnotes tell you if there is an exhibit by number. The exhibits do not necessarily follow any logical order. Hence the term from Matthews that documents are "buried." The two documents he refers to are Exhibit 11 and Exhibit 530, for example. BOB seems to think if a fact is mentioned and footnoted in the report, you can't say the document is buried. Of course, when dealing with the relationship of Kelly and Stepien, Maddow mislead you by telling you something was on page 17 instead of page 117 and her error was trying to make you think everything was in the front of the report, not buried in the back as BOB said. When attacking Maddow.

      KZ

      Delete
    2. "We think people might find the footnotes to the report which list the exhibits quite often turn up documents that don't exactly corroborate the assertions of the report."

      This is very interesting.

      Back in the day's when Somerby was hailed as a pioneer of poltical blogging, a long-forgotten person by the name of Ann Coulter once wrote a book hailed by pundits of every stripe for its meticulous research.

      This research was evidence by the pages upon pages of endnotes, citing multiple sources, which were often wrongfully described as footnotes.

      Bob diligently researched the sources cited in the endnotes to see if they matched up with what Coulter claimed they said. And surprise, surprise, they quite often not only failed to support what Coulter said, but actually said the exact opposite.

      I will note, however, that you make the same egregious error when you mistake "endnotes" for "footnotes." If we were Bob and his fans, we would wonder how much Maddow money you stuff in your alien pants while perspiring over your piddle.

      We, however, are more like Malala. We trust that you will accept your chastisement like the upstanding alien being you are, and promise never to do it again.

      Delete
    3. KZ, life has many complexities. You seem to have difficulty adapting when a consistent rule doesn't work for all situations. That mental inflexibility may be a symptom rather than something to write complaints about on the internet.

      Delete
    4. 11:07 we are not the ones creating rules. We are the ones testing out the rules for their creator, the OTB. We are testing them by applying them to his own work. Some seem not to like the rules when that is done.

      Delete
    5. 6:10 we do thank you for the correction on the nomenclature used in source citation. And thanks for the stroll down memory lane when BOB was a pioneer. We rarely get a glimpse of his past glory.

      KZ (who is so embarrassed we may go out and almost get somebody killed)

      Delete
    6. KZ, Somerby is not making rules. He is interpreting meaning. You see life in terms of rules. You demand they be applied consistently and think something is wrong when different circumstances require different understandings. It is the level small children operate on. That is on you.

      Delete
  7. OMB (Let's Play DumbBOB)

    Evidence Exists! How Dumb is it to Examine Endnotes and Exhibits

    Sayeth the OTB, lord of our Blog:

    "Alas! The fact that Sokolich’s endorsement was sought appears on page 2 of the Mastro report! It is discussed in detail starting on page 51.....

    But according to the report, the campaign learned that Sokolich wasn’t going to give an endorsement in March 2013.

    According to the report, Sokolich was removed from subsequent target lists. Despite his failure to endorse, he seemed to remain in the good graces of the Christie administration, according to the report. (Evidence is offered.)"


    So sayeth the Mastro Report:

    "He (Sokolich) was therefore considered a Democrat who might cross party lines to endorse the Governor’s re-election.(9) But by late March 2013, both the Governor’s Office and his campaign knew that Mayor Sokolich would not be endorsing,(10) yet that had no apparent effect upon his working relationship with the Christie Administration over the next several months. Indeed, by April 2013, Sokolich was no longer on
    the list of Mayors whose endorsement the campaign would be seeking; yet in mid-May 2013, he remained on a list of Mayors being considered for honorary appointments by the Governor. (11)"

    So far BOB has proven to be an Master Mastro paraphraser! But we shall follow the citations to the endnotes as we continue.

    KZ

    ReplyDelete
  8. OMB (Let's Play DumbBOB)

    Evidence Exists! How Dumb is it to Examine Endnotes and Exhibits
    (Continued)

    We learned OTB can paraphrase. And trust (Evidence exists!).

    Following along where we left off.....

    9 Ex. 11 (2013.01.24 9:04 AM Email from Sheridan to Mowers, et al.).
    10 Ex. 12 (2013.03.26 10:48 PM Email from Mowers to Sheridan).
    11 Ex. 590 (2013.05.13 5:49 PM Email from Ridley to Stark, et al.).

    We quickly note an error of our own. Earlier we called Ex. 590 "Exhibit 530" in a comment. This proves we make mistakes like our alleged troll paymaster, Princess Piddle of Perspiria, and were trying to make the document we and Chris Almost Killer called "buried" seem less buried. Shame on us.

    Exhibit 11. This proves the Mastro report correct. It also casts doubts on previous statements by Chris Christie and points to ethically questionable if not illegal activities in the Governor's office that could lead to things like political retaliation.

    This does prove Mark Sokolich was on the list of Democratic officials from whom the Office of Governor Christie was seeking endorsements
    for his re-election campaign. Note we did not say the Chris Christie Campaign was providing the list or seeking endorsements. We said the Office of Governor.

    The e-mail was from Peter Sheridan, Regional Director of the Intergovernmental Affairs office of the Governor to a group of people many, if not all of whom he and IGA Director Mark Stepien supervised in that office. While it was sent from a private Gmail address to private Gmail addresses, it was sent on a Thursday, January 24, 2013 at 9:04am. Presumably Sheridan just hit the "send" button right before clocking in on the taxpayers dime and all the recipients waited until lunch hour to open it.

    The e-mail tells they are free to pursue endorsements for Chritie's re-election. This email from a state employee supervisor tells them this work is "voluntary" on their part and "should" be done at "appropriate" times, broadly defined as "morning, eveining and weekends."

    It tells the recipients to use forms they will be supplied by the campaign, document all contacts and keep Sheridan informed of same,
    broadly defined as "morning, eveining and weekends." It also says the list of "targets" has been revised from lists previously submitted by the recipients of the e-mail.

    The list is not alphabetical by city or name of official. Number 2 on this list is Mark Sokolich, Mayor of Tiny Town (er, Ft. Lee). There may be no significance to that. It may mean none of the 21 people on the list were ever on Chris Christie's radar screen. We did not ask Chris Christie that at his January 2014 "My apology" press conference. But he did note Sokolich was not on his radar screen. "Couldn't pick him out in a line-up" is a paraphrase (with our own quotation marks added)
    that comes to mind.

    The report does not say, BOB does not say, that one could infer from this e-mail that the IGA office of the Governor was functioning as a re-election operation for Chris Christie at taxpayers expense. The lists submitted by regional IGA employees who got this e-mail presumably were those of people whom in their official capacity they had contacts with while trying to assist those officials serve their constituents when local affairs intersected with state government. And when these employees of the Governor voluntarily contacted these local officials at "appropriate times" seeking an endorsement for the Governor, it would be foolish for those local officials to think a refusal of such a favor would ever influence what the person seeking that favor or his Godfather, er Governor, might do when it came to official government business in the future.

    So, Exhibit 11 proves BOB and Mastro are right! Sort of.

    We'll turn to Exhibit 12 and 590 in due course.

    KZ

    ReplyDelete
  9. OMB (Let's Play DumbBOB)

    Evidence Exists! How Dumb is it to Examine Endnotes and Exhibits
    (Continued)

    We learned OTB can paraphrase. And trust (Evidence exists!).

    Following along where we left off.....

    Exhibit 12 is supposed to tell us this fact from the Mastro report as duly paraphrased by BOB:

    BOB:

    "But according to the report, the campaign learned that Sokolich wasn’t going to give an endorsement in March 2013."

    Mastro:

    "But by late March 2013, both the Governor’s Office and his campaign knew that Mayor Sokolich would not be endorsing,(10) "

    Exhibit 12. This e-mail is supposed to document what the Governor's office and his campaign knew about Sokolich and when they knew it.

    First we quote the entire message with our own added emphasis.

    "I think Sokolich is going to be
    a no. It's a shame too--I really like the guy."

    Well, it that message proves anything, it is the sender thinks something is going to happen. It will involve the likeable Mark Sokolich. It will be negative.

    It does not say that Sokolich has done a thing.

    This e-mail is supposed to be from Matt Mowers to Pete Sheridan. It does contain a time which is "appropriate" 10:48 pm on March 26, 2013. But the "From:" line has no name, just numbers. It is not on a Gmail form like Exhibit 11, which contained a Gmail message from Sheridan to Mowers at a Gmail address. And it certainly does not appear to be in any kind of "Recap Form" referred to in Sheridan's target list e-mail which Sheridan instructed his subordinate "volunteers" to use in reporting back all contacts with those targets he gave them.

    Presumably, if the "volunteers" had been following instructions from Sheridan, there ought to be several documents from Mowers outlining contacts with Sokolich. This is the only one in the exhibits. And, as a final observation, it is written to a government employee, Pete Sheridan. There is no documentation he informed the "campaign." Unless they were one and the same.

    KZ



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  10. OMB (Let's Play DumbBOB)

    Evidence Exists! How Dumb is it to Examine Endnotes and Exhibits
    (Continued)

    We learned OTB can paraphrase. And trust (Evidence exists!).
    We learned evidence shows Sokolich was targeted by Office of the Governor staffers seeking his endorsement of Christie's re-election. We learned that same staffer was told by an e-mail from somebody in late March that Sokolich might be a no to something.

    Let's move on to the third thing BOB paraphrased.

    BOB:

    "... Sokolich was removed from subsequent target lists. Despite his failure to endorse, he seemed to remain in the good graces of the Christie administration, according to the report. (Evidence is offered.)"

    Mastro Report:

    "that had no apparent effect upon his working relationship with the Christie Administration over the next several months. Indeed, by April 2013, Sokolich was no longer on the list of Mayors whose endorsement the campaign would be seeking; yet in mid-May 2013, he remained on a list of Mayors being considered for honorary appointments by the Governor. (11)"

    (11) refers to Exhibit 590 in Volume IV of the documents. We wish this document could be cut and pasted in full here.

    It purports to be a Gmail from Christopher Stark, then and perhaps still a Regional IGA director for the Governor's office. It is sent to three IGA staffers whose e-mail addresses are blocked out, unlike those in Exhibit 11. It is dated May 13,2013. It is titled "Appointment Roster and Unreponsive Mayors."

    It asks two recipients to put the party affililiation on their lists. It then has a subtitle headed "Unresponsive Mayors:" Below that is a white black bordered box with nothing in it. No names whatsover. Following that is another subtitle headed "Appointment List:" It too has a smaller blank box. Below that two names are listed with no space between them on separate lines:

    Dawn Zimmer, Hoboken-D
    Mark Sokolich, Ft. Lee-D

    Following that is a larger blank black bordered box.

    There is, in short, nothing in this document that provides evidence about Sokolich not being on any list seeking endorsements, the first part of the statement BOB repeated from the report.

    There is also nothing to show Sokolich was on a list in May being considered for honorary appointments. The document is not an official Governor's office e-mail. It does not say what the word "appointments"
    means. Is it really for consideration for appointment to something by Christie? Or does it mean follow up campaign appointments are needed because these Mayors haven't declared yet? The document does not say. If this is an official list for the Governor's office it means his staff is now conducting official business on private e-mail accounts as well as campaign business.

    Conveniently the only two names in the entire document are the two Mayors at the center of the two charges swirling about Christie's governorhsip and they happen to appear in this document together. Oddly neither are on the "Unresponsive Mayor's List" despite the Report's assertion the Governor's office and campaign knew Sokolich was unreponsive back in late March.

    This is the flimsy "evidence" backing what BOB has repeatedly referred to as the "new information" in the Mastro report...information about the endorsement efforts involving Sokolich.

    "But alas!" concludes BOB "But alas! If you were watching Hardball last week, you were never told about the chronology presented in the Mastro report. You didn’t see anyone try to evaluate that chronology."

    Well BOBfans, we just did that evaluation for you. But alas! There is no evidence in May, 2013 that the Christie campaign had given up trying to get the endorsement of Mark Sokolich for an election that was still six months away. None. Except the malarkey BOB bought sight unseen. Alas!

    KZ

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