This year, he has been an outspoken critic of the NYPD for its surveillance tactics used on Muslim groups, which included ones in New Jersey. Anyone with a modicum of awareness about the allegiances of the Muslim Students Association (MSA) knows that the NYPD was more than justified in its concerns.
Nonetheless, Christie's criticism of the NYPD raises some questions, especially in light of his defense of Sohail Mohammed last year.
Heated rhetoric between New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and New York officials over the NYPD's surveillance activities on Muslim subjects in New Jersey is reviving questions about Christie's views toward radical Islam.That puts THIS in a new context, doesn't it?
Christie expressed anger about the surveillance following disclosures in a series of Associated Press reports. "I don't know if this NYPD action was born out of arrogance, or out of paranoia, or out of both," he said when asked about it on his monthly radio show, "but we're taking a real good, strong hard look at it from a policy perspective at the governor's office level."
That prompted U.S. Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., to tell a radio interviewer "I wish Chris Christie was more concerned about keeping people alive than he is about trying to score cheap political points."
Jonathan Tobin analyzes the situation, finding it is more than "two politicians who love to run their mouths and are intolerant of criticism." Rather, he sees Christie cynically choosing sides to cultivate Muslim political support. As the Investigative Project on Terrorism reported last year, Christie's appointment of Sohail Mohammed to be a state judge was a troubling sign. Mohammed had represented Mohammed Qatanani, an imam suspected of Hamas ties, in a deportation case.
"Christie not only sought to prevent the deportation but spoke at the imam's mosque which had previously been the site of a $2 million fundraiser for Hamas by the now banned Holy Land Foundation," Tobin writes.
Christie, then a U.S. Attorney, took sides against the Department of Homeland Security by allowing a top lieutenant to testify as a character witness for the imam. Christie later embraced Qatanani at a Ramadan breakfast.