Chris Christie Squabbles With Mike Bloomberg Over 9/11 Ceremony

The ten-year anniversary of 9/11, which could be the last hurrah for the Tribute in Light, is also presenting itself as a good opportunity for area politicians to bicker with each other. New Jersey governor Chris Christie is trying to stage-manage the ceremony, basically, and Mayor Bloomberg held a press conference yesterday to stress that "This day isn't about any of us. It is about the families of the 3,000-odd people who lost their lives 10 years ago. And none of us in elective office, I think, should ever forget that." Which is a not-so-subtle dig at Christie and possibly Governor Cuomo, who's also rumored to be seeking a larger role in the ceremony.

Christie's office called Bloomberg to request that former Gov. Donald DiFrancesco, who was in office at the time of the attacks 10 years ago, be allowed to speak at the event. Bloomberg's administration agreed, also agreeing to former New York governor George Pataki having a speaking role at the ceremony.

In a press conference in Elizabeth, Christie said he felt "extraordinarily strong" about having DiFrancesco speak, and that "He should have been playing a role for years." Battle of the not-so-subtle digs, tri-state area politicians edition! He also wants the head of the Port Authority involved; "I'm certainly hopeful that the mayor will reevaluate his decision about excluding another New Jersey person from the ceremony."

The anniversary is more or less turning into an opportunity for everyone to disregard what the ceremony is actually supposed to be for, in favor of hand-wringing about its specifics. Will there be enough room for first responders? Will there be too many elected officials (not possible, according to Chris Christie)? What about foreign heads of state? Allow us to direct your attention to The Onion, where things could always be worse.

[WSJ]

[rgray@villagevoice.com] [@_rosiegray]

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