TRENTON, New Jersey (Reuters) - A top New Jersey legislator vowed on Tuesday to subpoena Governor Chris Christie's office or a law firm it hired to review the "Bridgegate" traffic scandal case - if documents that supported the review are not handed over by the end of the week.
Democratic state Assemblyman John Wisniewski said the state legislative committee investigating the incident, which saw days of gridlock on access roads to a heavily traveled bridge last fall when several lanes were closed in what has been seen as political retaliation, wanted transcripts of some 70 interviews conducted by a law firm Christie hired to review the case.
The law firm, Gibson Dunn, late last month released a report clearing Christie, a Republican seen as a top White House contender in 2016, of any wrongdoing. The 360-page report was quickly dismissed by state Democrats as "a whitewash."
"We instructed our counsel to seek them out from either Gibson Dunn or the governor's office," Wisniewski told reporters after a closed-door hearing on the matter by the committee leading the probe. "The ultimate tool the committee has is the subpoena authority which would compel the production of documents."
The report blamed Christie's former deputy chief of staff, Bridget Anne Kelly, and Port Authority official David Wildstein for closing lanes leading to the George Washington Bridge in an apparent bid to retaliate against the Democratic mayor of the town of Fort Lee who had not endorsed Christie's 2013 re-election campaign.
Christie fired Kelly, and Wildstein resigned. The governor, who has seen his standing in polls drop since the scandal broke, has repeatedly denied knowing about his aides' apparent political motives.
(Editing by Scott Malone and Gunna Dickson)