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Originally published Sunday, January 12, 2014 at 5:32 AM

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Gov. Chris Christie finds himself in quite a jam

The Wrap by Ron Judd

Seattle Times staff columnist

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If I'm not mistaken, One Ron Judd was a spokesperson for WSDOT during the tunnel vote. ... MORE
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When it comes to politicians, Americans are a forgiving bunch — probably to a fault.

Lawmakers of all flavors have managed to survive bouts of corruption, boozing, absconding, skimming, lying, pardoning, diddling, groping, abusing, parsing, trafficking, bribing, extorting, conniving, wide-stancing, sexting, cheating and other indiscretions that would send regular people to the hoosegow — or at least out onto the freeway onramp holding the obligatory “Anything Helps” cardboard sign.

But we do have limits. And demonstrating one of them beautifully was New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, R-Lack of Institutional Control, who reminded us of what may be the lone remaining area of bipartisan agreement in America today:

You can get away with almost anything. But stopping traffic in any way, shape or form is a capital political offense. And justifiably so.

More unshakable truths:

May we Suggest Canyonlands: Rampant confusion reigns for newlyweds after court decisions left same sex-marriages unrecognized in Utah, but suddenly recognized by the federal government. What does it mean? In the short term, people can stay married, but can only have legal same sex inside a federal office building, in a National Park, atop an FAA radar array, inside a TSA body-scan booth, or on an interstate highway.

Limelight Seizure: Nice moment of levity the other day when Blitz, the Seahawks mascot, appeared to take over the podium at a news conference about to be hosted by Gov. Jay Inslee at the state Capitol. Oddly enough, even Blitz was smart enough to make it clear he respected both recent contract votes of the Boeing Machinists union.

Speaking of Inslee: He now says it’s just wrong for corporations to pit one state against another in tax-break beauty contests for manufacturing jobs. But given Boeing’s recent jackpot, Mr. Wrap surmises it’s apparently still OK if they do it here.

Sniffing Out the Solution: Boeing is being all secretive about how it successfully repaired the burned carbon-fiber shell of an Ethiopian Airlines 787 Dreamsmoker that caught fire at Heathrow Airport. Here’s the thing: We know some Boeing people and, at the risk of being investigated for insider trading, can confidently suggest that now would be a good time to buy stock in the extra-big tubes of Testors model-airplane glue.

Titular Grandeur: In honor of recent weather events, we are officially renaming the imaginary “Seattle Freeze” the “Seattle Polar Vortex.”

This Week’s WSDOT Outlook Reminder: Normally, you wouldn’t think it would be necessary to remind state workers to remove the steel shafts from all those wells they currently are drilling in an attempt to remove the steel shaft they left in the ground years ago, and is now blocking the downtown Seattle tunnel-boring machine. Then again ...

Boom, There it Was: Federal officials are downplaying concerns about exploding rail cars carrying crude oil, saying it’s really only a concern when they move very slowly through populated areas where tracks are crisscrossed by highways and city streets.

And Finally: All you people — especially in news media — atwitter about the “seismic readings” taken at CenturyLink Field football games are aware you could get similar results by placing sensing equipment next to a truck dumping gravel, a ferry bumping up against a dock, or a half-million other normal, daily human activities, right? Just checking.

Ron Judd’s column appears each Sunday. Reach him at or 206-464-8280.

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"The Wrap" appears on Sundays, highlighting the absurd and providing the punch line to the week's news headlines.


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