Now that the third GOP presidential debate is over and Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz are labeled winners, John Ellis Bush is labeled as a loser, and Carly Fiorina has continued on as the most loathsome creature on the planet, it's time to give Chris Christie some attention. CNBC's Jim Cramer asked
Governor Christie, there has been a lot of political rhetoric that some bank executives should have gone to jail for the 2008 financial crisis.
But General Motors paid more than $1 billion in fines and settlements for its ignition switch defect. One hundred and twenty- four people died as a result of these faulty switches. No one went to jail.
As a former prosecutor, do you believe the people responsible for the switch and the cover-up belong behind bars?
Before switching gears and almost answering the question, the New Jersey governor maintained
You bet they do. And if I were the prosecutor, that is exactly where they would be. The fact is that this Justice Department under this president has been a political Justice Department.
It has been a Justice Department that decided that they want to pick who the winners and losers are. They like General Motors, so they give them a pass. They don’t like somebody else like David Petraeus, they prosecute them and send a decorated general on to disgrace. It’s a political Justice Department.
No Republican- or even Democratic- politician would dare remind Christie that on March 3, 2015 the former Army general and CIA director admitted
that he gave highly-classified journals to his onetime lover and that he lied to the FBI about it. But he only has to plead guilty to a single misdemeanor that will not involve a jail sentence thanks to a deal with federal prosecutors. The deal is yet another example of a senior official treated leniently for the sorts of violations that lower-level officials are punished severely for.
According to the plea deal, Petraeus, while leading American forces in Afghanistan, maintained eight notebooks that he filled with highly-sensitive information about the identities of covert officers, military strategy, intelligence capabilities and his discussions with senior government officials, including President Obama. Rather than handing over these “Black Books,” as the plea agreement calls them, to the Department of Defense when he retired from the military in 2011 to head the CIA, Petraeus retained them at his home and lent them, for several days, to Paula Broadwell, his authorized biographer and girlfriend.
In October 2012, FBI agents interviewed Petraeus as part of an investigation into his affair with Broadwell — Petraeus would resign from the CIA the next month — and Petraeus told them he had not shared classified material with Broadwell. The plea deal notes that “these statements were false” and that Petraeus “then and there knew that he previously shared the Black Books with his biographer.” Lying to FBI agents is a federal crime for which people have received sentences of months or more than a year in jail.
Under his deal with prosecutors, Petraeus pleaded guilty to just one count of unauthorized removal and retention of classified information, a misdemeanor that can be punishable by a year in jail, though the deal calls only for probation and a $40,000 fine. As The New York Times noted today, the deal “allows Mr. Petraeus to focus on his lucrative post-government career as a partner in a private equity firm and a worldwide speaker on national security issues.”
That is Chris Christie's proof that the Administration "picks winners and losers." He's fine with the numerous whistleblowers prosecuted by the Obama Attorney General's office, more than all other presidents combined. Five of these have gone to prison and Edward Snowden is likely to be sent there if he ever returns from exile in Russia, where he enjoys a modicum of freedom, to the Land of Exceptionalism.
The Obama Administration so viciously pursued David Petraeus that he was sentenced to probation (though with a $100,000 fine, as noted in the video below) and became an adviser to the White House. That's quite "a political Justice Department." Christie might have mentioned the same Justice Department has sent to jail zero (0) bankers for their role in the mortgage fraud which brought down the economy.
He might have but didn't, because it was Chris Christie, and it was the Republican Party. And have I mentioned how loathsome Carly Fiorina is?