Former Governor Chris Christie Settles Unpaid Parking Ticket After Media Inquiry

By David Wildstein, May 15, 2023, 9:17 am

Update: Chris Christie promptly paid his parking ticket this morning through an online transaction, shortly after receiving a text message from the New Jersey Globe and subsequent to the publication of this article.

Former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, known for his controversial tenure, has recently been labeled a scofflaw for his late payment of a $50 parking ticket. The citation was issued in close proximity to an upscale French chocolate shop in Jersey City.

The violation occurred when Christie’s car was parked on Newark Avenue near 2nd Street, a designated street-cleaning zone adjacent to L’atelier du Chocolat. While it remains uncertain whether Christie himself was behind the wheel of the gray Audi registered under his name, he received the summons at 1:16 PM on Tuesday, April 18. The parking regulations in effect prohibit parking between 1-3 PM on Tuesdays to facilitate street cleaning, and several signs were clearly posted in the vicinity.

Despite being aware of the May 5 deadline, Christie, who is reportedly contemplating a potential presidential run in 2024, failed to pay the ticket within the specified timeframe. Micah Rasmussen, the director of the Rebovich Institute for New Jersey Politics at Rider University, remarked, “No one believes a presidential campaign will turn on a traffic ticket, but the problem for Christie is that it plays to a well-worn pattern. It’s one more example of blowing off rules that the rest of us have to follow.”

Christie, who left office with the lowest recorded approval ratings of any New Jersey governor, at a dismal 15% approval rating and an overwhelming 81% disapproval rating, has a history marred by similar incidents fueled by his perceived arrogance.

Six years ago, during a state government shutdown over the July 4 weekend, Christie infamously drew criticism when he was photographed lounging on a beach chair outside a state-owned beach house, while ordinary New Jerseyans were turned away from Island Beach State Park.

As a presidential candidate in 2015, Christie faced scrutiny for accepting payment of a $30,000 hotel bill from King Abdullah of Jordan during a 2012 visit. This arrangement came after Christie had traveled to Israel and Jordan aboard a private jet provided by casino owner Sheldon Adelson, who was actively lobbying against the legalization of online gambling in New Jersey at the time.

Rasmussen emphasized the importance of avoiding actions that reinforce negative perceptions, stating, “When you know the public holds a negative perception of you, the last thing a candidate should be doing is reinforcing it.”

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While the parking ticket offense itself may not be grave, records indicate that Christie has neither sought an adjournment nor contacted the court to enter a not-guilty plea.

According to the Jersey City Municipal Court’s website, individuals who miss the payment deadline receive written notices, and the fines are subjected to an increase of at least $10 with each subsequent notice. The website further clarifies that these notices will persist until the fine is paid or the license is suspended.

Despite being approached for comment via text message, Christie did not respond.

Notably, Christie has a history of driving infractions, including six accidents and thirteen moving violations since 1985. During his tenure as U.S. Attorney, Christie was stopped for speeding in Lambertville in 2005. Despite driving an unregistered vehicle, he was permitted to drive home after identifying himself as a federal prosecutor and displaying an excessive level of dissatisfaction at the possibility of being towed.

Four years later, as a candidate for governor, Christie admitted to exceeding the speed limit by eighteen miles per hour in a small town but vehemently denied seeking special treatment.

In 2005, while en route to the swearing-in of a new Union County prosecutor, Christie drove the wrong way on a one-way street in Elizabeth, resulting in a collision with a motorcyclist. Christie’s vehicle was towed, and the motorcyclist, Andrew Mendonca, required hospitalization. Notably, Christie did not receive a ticket, although Elizabeth Police Director James Cosgrove stated that Christie identified himself as the U.S. Attorney. However, Cosgrove refrained from explicitly suggesting that Christie sought preferential treatment.

This recent parking ticket marks Christie’s second violation since losing his New Jersey State Police driver in 2018. In April of that year, a vehicle registered to Christie was cited for overtime parking in Morristown, and he duly paid a $36 fine.

More than five years since his departure from the governorship, Christie continues to experience unfavorability in his home state. A recent Fairleigh Dickinson University poll revealed that 70% of Republicans and GOP leaners would not consider voting for Christie in a New Jersey primary, regardless of the opposing candidate. Only 25% expressed openness to voting for him in any capacity. Notably, more than 70% of New Jersey Republicans indicated a preference for former President Donald Trump.

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By David Wildstein, May 15, 2023, 9:17 am

Update: Chris Christie promptly paid his parking ticket this morning through an online transaction, shortly after receiving a text message from the New Jersey Globe and subsequent to the publication of this article.

Former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, known for his controversial tenure, has recently been labeled a scofflaw for his late payment of a $50 parking ticket. The citation was issued in close proximity to an upscale French chocolate shop in Jersey City.

The violation occurred when Christie’s car was parked on Newark Avenue near 2nd Street, a designated street-cleaning zone adjacent to L’atelier du Chocolat. While it remains uncertain whether Christie himself was behind the wheel of the gray Audi registered under his name, he received the summons at 1:16 PM on Tuesday, April 18. The parking regulations in effect prohibit parking between 1-3 PM on Tuesdays to facilitate street cleaning, and several signs were clearly posted in the vicinity.

Despite being aware of the May 5 deadline, Christie, who is reportedly contemplating a potential presidential run in 2024, failed to pay the ticket within the specified timeframe. Micah Rasmussen, the director of the Rebovich Institute for New Jersey Politics at Rider University, remarked, “No one believes a presidential campaign will turn on a traffic ticket, but the problem for Christie is that it plays to a well-worn pattern. It’s one more example of blowing off rules that the rest of us have to follow.”

Christie, who left office with the lowest recorded approval ratings of any New Jersey governor, at a dismal 15% approval rating and an overwhelming 81% disapproval rating, has a history marred by similar incidents fueled by his perceived arrogance.

Six years ago, during a state government shutdown over the July 4 weekend, Christie infamously drew criticism when he was photographed lounging on a beach chair outside a state-owned beach house, while ordinary New Jerseyans were turned away from Island Beach State Park.

As a presidential candidate in 2015, Christie faced scrutiny for accepting payment of a $30,000 hotel bill from King Abdullah of Jordan during a 2012 visit. This arrangement came after Christie had traveled to Israel and Jordan aboard a private jet provided by casino owner Sheldon Adelson, who was actively lobbying against the legalization of online gambling in New Jersey at the time.

Rasmussen emphasized the importance of avoiding actions that reinforce negative perceptions, stating, “When you know the public holds a negative perception of you, the last thing a candidate should be doing is reinforcing it.”

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While the parking ticket offense itself may not be grave, records indicate that Christie has neither sought an adjournment nor contacted the court to enter a not-guilty plea.

According to the Jersey City Municipal Court’s website, individuals who miss the payment deadline receive written notices, and the fines are subjected to an increase of at least $10 with each subsequent notice. The website further clarifies that these notices will persist until the fine is paid or the license is suspended.

Despite being approached for comment via text message, Christie did not respond.

Notably, Christie has a history of driving infractions, including six accidents and thirteen moving violations since 1985. During his tenure as U.S. Attorney, Christie was stopped for speeding in Lambertville in 2005. Despite driving an unregistered vehicle, he was permitted to drive home after identifying himself as a federal prosecutor and displaying an excessive level of dissatisfaction at the possibility of being towed.

Four years later, as a candidate for governor, Christie admitted to exceeding the speed limit by eighteen miles per hour in a small town but vehemently denied seeking special treatment.

In 2005, while en route to the swearing-in of a new Union County prosecutor, Christie drove the wrong way on a one-way street in Elizabeth, resulting in a collision with a motorcyclist. Christie’s vehicle was towed, and the motorcyclist, Andrew Mendonca, required hospitalization. Notably, Christie did not receive a ticket, although Elizabeth Police Director James Cosgrove stated that Christie identified himself as the U.S. Attorney. However, Cosgrove refrained from explicitly suggesting that Christie sought preferential treatment.

This recent parking ticket marks Christie’s second violation since losing his New Jersey State Police driver in 2018. In April of that year, a vehicle registered to Christie was cited for overtime parking in Morristown, and he duly paid a $36 fine.

More than five years since his departure from the governorship, Christie continues to experience unfavorability in his home state. A recent Fairleigh Dickinson University poll revealed that 70% of Republicans and GOP leaners would not consider voting for Christie in a New Jersey primary, regardless of the opposing candidate. Only 25% expressed openness to voting for him in any capacity. Notably, more than 70% of New Jersey Republicans indicated a preference for former President Donald Trump.

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