When Christie met Abdullah

By Matt Rooney | The Save Jersey Blog

The popular hero of the week is King Abdullah II of Jordan, Save Jerseyans, a pro-Western, Clint Eastwood-quoting and relatively progressive monarch who is taking an aggressive approach to combating ISIS at a time when President Obama seems preoccupied by pressing concerns like net neutrality and his next taxpayer-subsidized vacation.

Of course, there’s a connection to Chris Christie’s PR problems. Why wouldn’t there be?

Governor Christie receives a security briefing at the Golan Heights (April 2012)
Governor Christie receives a security briefing at the Golan Heights (April 2012)

From Fox News:

Let’s unpack the details. On a 2012 trade mission to Israel, Christie flew on a private plane provided by casino magnate Sheldon Adelson. The governor had his own bedroom and brought his wife, three of his four children, his mother-in-law, his father and stepmother, and others. The appearance isn’t great because Adelson was then “opposing legislation then before the governor to legalize online gambling in New Jersey.”

But Christie eventually signed the bill, and a spokeswoman said Adelson hadn’t personally lobbied him on the issue—kind of taking the air out of the story.

That’s the set up. Here’s the punchline:

Then, “King Abdullah of Jordan picked up the tab for a Christie family weekend at the end of the trip. The governor and two staff members who accompanied him came back to New Jersey bubbling that they had celebrated with Bono, the lead singer of U2, at three parties, two at the king’s residence, the other a Champagne reception in the desert. But a small knot of aides fretted: The rooms in luxurious Kempinski hotels had cost about $30,000; what would happen if that became public?”

I guess now we’ll find out?

Not that Gov. Christie is by any means a record-breaker in this department. In his post-presidential life, for example, Bill Clinton has spent a fortune (literally) on overseas travel. But we all know there are different rules for Republicans…