NJ Dem invites Fort Lee mayor to State of the Union address

Rep. Bill Pascrell (D-N.J.) has invited the mayor at the center of the Chris Christie bridge scandal to the State of the Union address.

Pascrell invited Fort Lee, N.J., Mayor Mark Sokolich (D), whose city suffered major traffic snarls after two lanes were closed last year on the George Washington Bridge, apparently as retribution against Sokolich's decision to not endorse Christie for a second term as New Jersey's governor.

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Christie apologized for the closures and fired his deputy chief of staff after the release of emails that suggested her involvement.

Pascrell said he did not invite Sokolich to highlight the bridge controversy. Instead, he said wanted to invite someone from his newly drawn district.  

"He did exhibit a standup attitude [on the bridge issue] which I've grown to like and I can't say I kept that out of my mind because that's not the truth, but it's not the reason he was selected," Pascrell told The Record

Christie eventually met with Sokolich after the bridge scandal broke. The mayor has said he accepted the governor's apology and that he takes Christie at his word that he had nothing to do with the closure. 

Christie — a potential candidate for president in 2016 — has seen his approval ratings drop since the scandal, which is the subject of several investigations.