Christie Inaugural Set for Ellis Island

By Matt Rooney | The Save Jersey Blog

Ellis_Island_in_1905Talk about optics overload!

We learned today that the location of Governor Chris Christie’s inauguration celebration will be none other than historic Ellis Island, Save Jerseyans.

“Today, Ellis Island stands as a symbol of the hope, freedom, and promise of opportunity afforded by our state and our nation and continues to be a powerful connection for millions of Americans to their family history,” the Inaugural Committee, headed by Bill Palatucci and Todd Christie, shared in its email announcement. “Estimates suggest that nearly half of all Americans can trace their lineage to at least one ancestor who was one of the more than 12 million individuals who passed through Ellis Island during its operation as a federal immigration station. Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty are part of the Statue of Liberty National Monument shared by New Jersey and New York.”

Given the Governor’s presidential prospects and his controversial recent forays into immigration politics, the choice of Ellis Island to begin his second term can’t be seen as anything other than highly symbolic and carefully calculated to send a message. Christie captured a little better than half of the Hispanic vote in last month’s gubernatorial election.

Ellis Island has, at various times, served as an oyster bed harvesting hot spot, arsenal and, most famously, and immigration station. A nice little subplot to January’s big event is the often dormant but never settled issue of whether Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty are in New York or New Jersey territory. For one night at least, Save Jerseyans, it’s unambiguously within the borders of Christie Country.

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