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A bridge too far?

“New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, a Republican Party star enmeshed in scandal after re-election in November, will return to the themes of small government and bipartisan cooperation when he is sworn in for a second term on Tuesday,” Reuters reports. “Excerpts from Christie's inaugural address provided by the governor's office made no mention of the abuse of power accusations swirling around some of his closest aides. Instead, the speech criticized the idea that an ‘almighty government’ can ‘fix any problem.’ ‘I do not believe that New Jerseyans want a bigger, more expensive government that penalizes success and then gives the pittance left to a few in the name of income equity,’ Christie said in the excerpt.”

Jenna Portnoy at the Star-Ledger: “Gov. Chris Christie will take the oath of office for a second term today, as his administration copes with multiple controversies that have taken the shine off his historic re-election. The Republican governor will press on with an invitation-only morning church service in Newark, noon speech and swearing-in in Trenton and evening party on Ellis Island.” More: “His administration remained on the defensive Saturday, denying allegations from Hoboken Mayor Dawn Zimmer that the storm-ravaged city was denied Hurricane Sandy funds because she refused to expedite a Christie-endorsed development plan.”

Christie will hit DC in his speech, Politico notes, per prepared remarks: “We cannot fall victim to the attitude of Washington, D.C. The attitude that says I am always right and you are always wrong. The attitude that puts everyone into a box they are not permitted to leave. The attitude that puts political wins ahead of policy agreements. The belief that compromise is a dirty word.”

Bully or good pol? Remember this quote in 2016. “Part of politics is trying to have sharp elbows publicly in order to make a deal privately," Christie told Matt Bai. "And if you don’t have the willingness and ability to do that, then the opportunity to make deals privately that benefit the public become much more difficult in my view, and in my experience.”

Former Olympic track star Carl Lewis blasts Chris Christie in the Star Ledger: “Three years ago, a plan to make Carl Lewis a ‘youth fitness ambassador’ for New Jersey was scrapped by Gov. Chris Christie’s administration when the Olympic track and field star decided to run for state Senate as a Democrat, Lewis said today. Now, with the George Washington Bridge scandal raging, the nine-time Olympic gold medalist says he sees a ‘strong parallel’ between his own interaction with Christie and what happened in Fort Lee, and that Christie is an ‘insecure person.’ ‘I felt like he was trying to intimidate me, absolutely. But I definitely didn’t feel intimidated,’ Lewis, who recently moved to Houston, said in a phone interview.  Added Lewis: ‘It’s interesting, everyone calling him a bully. I don’t really see him as a bully. I see it more as someone who’s insecure, and he’s governor now and has got the power.’”