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Gov. Chris Christie calls Jets and Giants lawsuit “anti-New Jersey”

Chris Christie, Tia McLaughlin Getty Images

During his tenure as the Governor of New Jersey, Chris Christie has earned a reputation for speaking his mind without going through the usual political machinations of trying to make everyone like him.

He’s sticking to his guns when it comes to a lawsuit filed by the Giants and Jets to stop construction on a massive mall/water park/amusement park project next to MetLife Stadium. The teams say they are concerned about disruptions on game days and they argue that the American Dream project’s developers have violated an agreement of cooperation with the teams.

Christie doesn’t agree with the teams’ take and castigated them for filing a lawsuit while the state was trying to broker a resolution to the problems. Christie called the teams’ legal maneuvering “anti-New Jersey” for trying to stop a big construction project at a time when the state is in need of jobs. He also slapped the teams for fighting the state so soon after getting “one of the sweetest deals” from New Jersey to help them build their new stadium.

“So I think it’s disappointing that you would see folks who benefited so mightily from the taxpayers in this state would now take this kind of very aggressive action before we could come to a conclusion on appropriate negotiations to reach a compromise, so that thousands of people can get to work finishing that property and thousands of others could go to work there once the property is completed,” Christie said, via John Brennan of the Bergen Record. “As I’ve said before, I’m disappointed in the Mara family, I’m disappointed in the Tisch family, and I’m disappointed in Woody Johnson for the approach they took — and that, I’m sure, comes as no great shock to them.”

As a lifelong resident of New York City who has made many trips to the Meadowlands, I can say that the prospect of traffic on game days with a fully operational American Dream is nightmarish in the extreme. There are public transportation options to get to the Meadowlands, but they are not nearly convenient enough to think that they will take a bite out of the concerns raised by the teams.

Whether those concerns should be reason enough to spike a $3.7 billion project that could have a big economic impact on North Jersey is a question that looks like it will be settled in courtrooms or government offices.

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40 Responses to “Gov. Chris Christie calls Jets and Giants lawsuit “anti-New Jersey””
  1. Great Caesar's Ghost says: Aug 1, 2012 11:33 AM

    Attention NFL: You are not the only entertainment enterprise in the world. Quit whining. If the “NY” teams were worried about traffic they should have built in the boroughs near the subway lines where real New Yorkers live.

  2. cush2push says: Aug 1, 2012 11:34 AM

    Would make a lot of sense if/when they build it they add in more ways to get out of jersey so everyone can be happy

  3. trollhammer20 says: Aug 1, 2012 11:43 AM

    Good Lord. Who’s the lardass in the photo? Did he eat the Governor?

  4. wutdafuhk says: Aug 1, 2012 11:45 AM

    I guarantee you Wellington Mara & Bob Tisch would not be so close minded.

  5. nyjets1017 says: Aug 1, 2012 11:49 AM

    Maybe he should attend a game without a police escort to get threw traffic then see how he feels about it.

  6. ridingwithnohandlebars says: Aug 1, 2012 11:51 AM

    Could they just have it closed on the days of games?

  7. j0esixpack says: Aug 1, 2012 11:51 AM

    Of course it’s anti-New Jersey.

    If they could be in New York they would be.

    But the fact is that the teams took ample tax payer dollars for the stadium and need to compromise to allow the state to generate some revenue to offset that.

    But Gridlock doesn’t work for the teams, or the American Dream. Seems to me both share an interest in avoiding that.

  8. kacapaco says: Aug 1, 2012 11:52 AM

    So, to help their business flourish they decided to block a legit business that will hire thousands and generate millions of taxes? Boy, I liked Christie.

  9. mbsbjb3 says: Aug 1, 2012 11:56 AM

    Xanadu will happen. Just after 2020.

  10. chargerdillon says: Aug 1, 2012 11:56 AM

    As somebody who lives in San Diego and quite frankly wouldn’t care if the entire state of New York was burned to the ground let me just say this from a position of a fan who’s about to lose the franchise in his city.

    Your billionaire owners got the sweetheart deal our city wont give to our billionaire owner because just like your state, we can’t afford it. But guess what, you gave a sweetheart deal to 2 billionaires who are now holding your city hostage of potential jobs which could turn out to take people away from football games and have them go somewhere else. When you give stupid handouts, you take it in the backside. Bend over New York, a couple billionaires are going to stay rich, and hundreds of Ne Yorkers will stay unemployed.

  11. kvaldo1 says: Aug 1, 2012 11:58 AM

    for 20 days out of each year; 4 of which are marginal football/scrimmages where capacity of stadium and traffic will be 60-70% at best…I rule in favor of the govenor on this one…

  12. tmkelley1 says: Aug 1, 2012 12:02 PM

    Nightmarish in the extreme? Aww, cry me a river, dude. We’re talking full time jobs for real people, not this fantasy world of football folks who reap millions and millions from a 4-hour visit to a stadium. Get real.

  13. rmc1995 says: Aug 1, 2012 12:11 PM

    I guess to save you from nightmare traffic 8 times a year all of the jobs and revenue expected from the development should stop immediately.

  14. savocabol1 says: Aug 1, 2012 12:11 PM

    How many game days per year are we talking about here (less than 20)? +

    So for that reason alone you want to stop thousands of citizens from getting a job?

  15. smacklayer says: Aug 1, 2012 12:15 PM

    Sounds to me like the Jets and Giants want their cake and eat it too. They got a sweetheart deal to build the stadium as the expense of citizens of NJ. Now NJ wants a little scratch of their back to get some jobs and tax revenue on the heels of the statium, and the Jets/Giants are crying. I say NJ should pass legislation that any non-NJ resident has to pay a $200 convenience fee to enter the stadium and a $200 transportation fee to drive to stadium.

  16. Baloo says: Aug 1, 2012 12:18 PM

    Christie makes a good stand here. Especially since the football season is only 16 weeks long and causes traffic one DAY out of the week. Come on. The mall/amusement park will generate revenue year-round.

  17. fafaflunky says: Aug 1, 2012 12:22 PM

    Play in ny then..

  18. mijoh20 says: Aug 1, 2012 12:29 PM

    Dude, the mass transportation out to the Meadowlands on game day is terrific. How can a train that drops you off RIGHT IN FRONT OF THE STADIUM not be convenient enough? Not to mention the exorbitant parking fees for the privilege of parking who knows where that you don’t have to pay. I am definitely not a Christie fan, but I agree with him on this. Just because the citizens of NJ got raped so that Met Life stadium could be built in NJ does not mean that the Giants and Jets own the whole Meadowlands. The problem of extra folks on game day is more of a mass transit issue to me. As good as the mass transit is on game days, I’m sure that proper mass transit options when this mall opens will make this a non-issue.

  19. cleverbob says: Aug 1, 2012 12:35 PM

    If there truly was some type of written agreement that’s being violated, then Christie doesn’t have a leg to stand on. I’m sure it will all get negotiated away with more backroom dealings for corporate welfare, political contributions, etc.

    It’s tough to pick a side when you can’t stand any of the involved parties…

  20. EJ says: Aug 1, 2012 12:35 PM

    There is going to be a lot of hatred headed your way Mara and Tisch families. First off, you should show some respect to the Taxpayers, one if not both teams should be changed to the New Jersey Giants/Jets. Its where they play right?
    Now they are blocking the State from creating more jobs? Because of parking/transportation? Ridiculous, especially with the way the economy has been, this is the time when we need jobs the most.

  21. JSpicoli says: Aug 1, 2012 12:48 PM

    We need more politicians like Christie. Most of the ones like him are too smart to want public office.

  22. mtheparrothead says: Aug 1, 2012 1:04 PM

    Yes. I’m sure traffic for a water park during football season in new jersey is a nightmare.

  23. dietrich43 says: Aug 1, 2012 1:10 PM

    If the Giants and Jets wanted a say in what was built on that property, then they should have bought it!

  24. dontouchmyjunk says: Aug 1, 2012 1:13 PM

    Typical rich man greed. Is anyone really surprised?

  25. guitarmaninks says: Aug 1, 2012 1:26 PM

    Is it an indoor water park of some sort? If not, I don’t think many will be going to a water park in November , December and January … Any water parks I know of close that time of year

  26. cruuuzcontrol says: Aug 1, 2012 1:30 PM

    American Dream is also getting a heck of a sweet deal of their own to amend this monstrosity into an even more massive failure than it would have be if Xanadu opened on target. This deal sucks. Trying to expand its suckitude is the incorrect answer. The Giants and Jets are right to do this if they weren’t getting their point across at the negotiating table.

    But I bet Woody Johnson is reading this and saying, “Chris, I thought we were bestest buddies?!?!?!”

  27. granadafan says: Aug 1, 2012 1:40 PM

    Never trust a man with two first names. However, the NFL’s arrogance knows no bounds. They are a company worth hundreds of billions of dollars run by multibillion dollar owners, yet they STILL hold cities/states hostage by demanding that the poor taxpayers fund their posh place of work. Now they want to irrationally stop contruction of a nearby mall.

    Teams have never cared about traffic, so this unwarranted lawsuit smells of money. It sounds like the greedy owners of the Jets and Giants just want a piece of the revenue. 1%ers.

  28. riverhorsey says: Aug 1, 2012 1:45 PM

    Sorry Gov. Potato Chip but I don’t want to spend another hour or three hours getting in or out of the parking lot.

    They can build the mall/amusement park in another spot.

  29. frankfordyellowjackets says: Aug 1, 2012 2:02 PM

    Maybe they should close Newark airport on game days too.
    Christie’s a fatty but I have to agree with him on this.

  30. NoHomeTeam says: Aug 1, 2012 2:16 PM

    smacklayer says: “I say NJ should pass legislation that any non-NJ resident has to pay a $200 convenience fee to enter the stadium and a $200 transportation fee to drive to stadium.”

    **********

    I’m assuming a bit of hyperbole here, but the suggestion does have a certain amount of emotional appeal.

    I’m not sure it would be legal to do, though, let alone enforceable.

    It also kind of targets the wrong people; non-NJ residents are already contributing their out-of-state dollars to NJ just by going to the game (on the assumption that the Meadowlands Commission negotiated at least some small percentage of the gate and concessions money from the Giants and the Jets.)

    Adding a ZIP-code tax doesn’t really affect the business entities who are attempting to block the mall project, unless the goal is to keep people from going to the games, as a kind of punitive measure.

  31. chazzmon says: Aug 1, 2012 2:22 PM

    Governor Chubbs is right. Traffic stinks in No Jersey on weekdays too. Football is 16 days a year, if don’t want to go to the mall on those days then don’t. If you don’t want to park at the Meadowlands then go mass transit. You can’t block those jobs & business for 16 days a year.
    Not to mention the Giants & Jets sell out every game anyway what are they worried about.

  32. nflovercollegefb says: Aug 1, 2012 2:29 PM

    Gotta agree with the Gov. on this issue.

    BTW, a water park in the NJ Meadowlands? ewwww, bring on the three-eyed fish!

  33. btowngetsdown says: Aug 1, 2012 3:20 PM

    nyjets1017 says:
    Aug 1, 2012 11:49 AM
    Maybe he should attend a game without a police escort to get threw traffic then see how he feels about it.

    ___________________________

    Good point. But, “police escorts?” He’s way beyond that. He takes taxpayer funded helicopters to his kid’s baseball games. No wonder he doesn’t care about traffic concerns.

  34. covercorner says: Aug 1, 2012 4:16 PM

    Chris Christie is a do nothing governor.

  35. onbucky96 says: Aug 1, 2012 4:22 PM

    Wow. I have to agree with Christe the Hutt on this one.

  36. tarheelpirate says: Aug 1, 2012 9:09 PM

    Wait. Isn’t this the same guy who, upon taking office, stopped a major infrastructure/transportation project, between NY and NJ, that would have added many, many more jobs than this project?

  37. seageo says: Aug 1, 2012 9:36 PM

    I am a Christie supporter and dont think one business can stop another because of traffic….
    HOWEVER…

    As far as a “sweetheart” deal dont forget that the state owed the Giants millions because they failed with renovations and upkeep of the old Giants Stadium which the Giants quietly ate the cost.

    ALSO I dont think I am alone when I say that Xanadu or whatever it is caused is a HUGE eyesore…the ugliest thing I have ever seen and built on top of a dump. Get rid of it and put it somewhere else.

  38. enoughofthatalready says: Aug 1, 2012 9:59 PM

    With the blue laws in effect, the mall will be closed on Sundays anyway. What is the big deal? Maybe the Jets will sell some tickets instead of putting them in Cracker Jacks boxes as booby prizes.

  39. dobreshunka says: Aug 1, 2012 11:40 PM

    There are still blue laws in Bergen county. Every retail store with the exception of grocery stores and restaurants are closed by law on Sunday. This freakin monstrosity that was a bad idea in the first place, and has/will suck far more taxpayer dollars than MetLife Stadium EVER will, and Xanadu shouldn’t get a free ride at the expense of other businesses. There’s a reason why the residents of Bergen County want malls closed on Sunday, and the fat ass who likes to turn purple and scream a lot ought to accept that and quit theatening to sit on people who simply want the current laws upheld.

  40. jetsfan80 says: Aug 2, 2012 11:48 AM

    Chris Christie is a fat jackass. It’s his way or no way. Must have been bullied his entire life for being a fat ass. Now everyone has to pay for it

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