The Spectacle Blog

His Brother’s Keeper After All?

By on 4.3.09 | 4:24PM

Curious what a post-Obama Republican candidacy looks like? Fairly similar to a pre-Obama one. That is, riddled with the same sort of ethical lapses that made the GOP look incompetent enough to suck the wind out of its supporters. From the Philly Inquirer:

The Securities and Exchange Commission in April 2005 accused Christie's brother, Todd, of making a series of improper trades of America Online Inc. and International Business Machines Corp. stock between 1999 and 2003. In October 2008, Todd Christie settled with the SEC, admitting no wrongdoing but agreeing to stop improper trading practices, according to a copy of the settlement.

The company Todd Christie headed, Spear, Leeds & Kellogg Specialists L.L.C., settled with the SEC and agreed to pay a $16.4 million civil fine, according to a March 2004 SEC news release.

Yesterday, the Mendham Observer-Tribune published a story noting that Christie, as U.S. attorney, he [sic] gave a lucrative no-bid contract to David Kelly in September 2007. Kelly was the U.S. attorney who investigated the stock fraud case that included Todd Christie.

Kelly, former U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York, was out of the office yesterday and did not return a message left with his secretary.

Christie said yesterday that he had never had a conversation with Kelly about his brother's SEC problems. He said he gave Kelly the monitoring contract because "he was a great prosecutor who ran one of the biggest offices in the country and I needed a tough guy."

Long story short: Christie's brother gets in trouble. The prosecutor doesn't pursue him. But later, Christie gives the prosecutor a big financial pat on the back. Even if it's all a happy coincidence that the toughest guy is the one who wasn't particularly tough on Christie's brother, it's still stupid.

The question is whether supporters are concerned about this opening Christie up to a Democratic bludgeoning. Getting these issues out of the way early is the the best option if unseating Corzine is the goal.

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