NJ Politics Digest: One Bridgegate Convict Is Ready to Go to Jail

Bill Baroni, the Deputy Executive Director of the Port Authority who resigned amid Bridgegate accusations, led secret negotiations with 32BJ, the powerful affiliate of the Service Employees International Union.
Bill Baroni, the former Deputy Executive Director of the Port Authority who was convicted for his part in the Bridgegate scandal. Bryan Thomas/Getty Images

Bill Baroni, a former top aide in the Christie administration who was convicted for his part in the Bridgegate scandal, has asked to begin serving his sentence for participating in the petty political payback scheme.

Baroni’s decision comes after a federal appeals court largely upheld the convictions of both Baroni and fellow defendant Bridget Anne Kelly, according to NJ.com.

In a filing, Baroni asked that his case be returned to federal District Court so he can be re-sentenced and start serving his time. Kelly, meanwhile, is continuing to appeal her convictions.

Baroni, who was originally ordered to serve 24 months in prison, must be re-sentenced because the appeals court dismissed the part of the case against Baroni dealing with alleged civil rights violations against Kelly and Baroni.

Both Baroni and Kelly have been free on bail since their November 2016 conviction for orchestrating massive traffic tie-ups on the George Washington Bridge as political payback against the Democratic mayor of Fort Lee for not endorsing their boss, former Republican Gov. Chris Christie. Christie, who was never charged in connection with the scheme, has denied any involvement. Still, publicity about the case was enough to sink Christie’s presidential ambitions.

In their appeal of her conviction, Kelly’s attorneys argue that allowing her conviction for using her post to punish a political rival and inconvenience thousands of state motorists would open the door for future politically motivated prosecutions, according to NJ.com

Quote of the Day: “The leagues should understand this better than anybody: When you lose, you lose. That ‘L’ is up there on the board,” — Former Gov. Chris Christie, on professional sports leagues now trying to get a cut of sports gambling revenue after losing their fight against legalizing betting.

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