WASHINGTON DC (CBSNewYork) – Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie made an unexpected visit to the United States Supreme Court on Tuesday as justices heard arguments in the “Bridegate” corruption case.
Christie was seated right in front of Kelly. They were even on the same train to DC on Monday night, but they didn’t say one word to each other.
“This past week marks six years since my world was turned upside down,” said Kelly.
Kelly and Baroni hope the Supreme Court can provide redemption.
“A year ago I walked into federal prison and I never dreamed that the Supreme Court of the United States would agree to hear our case,” said Baroni. “And here we are.”
The pair was convicted in the 2013 closure of the George Washington Bridge that caused widespread delays, a move more commonly known as the “Bridgegate” scandal. It was meant to serve as punishment to the mayor of Fort Lee, N.J., after he decided not to endorse Christie’s re-election bid.
“As we argued today in the Supreme Court, there’s a clear difference between politics and crime,” said attorney Michael Levy.
Despite the convictions, the pair has maintained their innocence, saying instead they were scapegoats and blamed Christie who was not
charged in the case.
On Tuesday the accused came face-to-face with their rival at the nation’s highest court.
When asked about Christie’s presence, Kelly was direct.
“I hope he has a harder time seeing me than I am seeing him,” she said. “I’m glad he’s paying attention.”All watched as attorneys challenged how the laws were applied that led to the fraud and conspiracy convictions, saying it could impact other government employees.
For Kelly and Baroni, their future is on the line.
“So now we wait,” said Baroni. “I wait with patience. I wait with humility, and I wait in joyful hope for some justice.”
Some of the justices were skeptical. Justice Stephen Breyer said, “I don’t know how this case works.”
A final decision will be made in the spring.