Newly re-elected Gov. Chris Christie may have hurt a possible bid for president by inviting an embattled hedge-fund manager to his victory party, Fox Business Network reports.
According to sources cited by reporter Charlie Gasparino, New Jersey's Christie personally urged SAC Capital's Steven A. Cohen to attend his victory party because he heard his friend was depressed after his company pleaded guilty
to insider trading a day earlier.
Though Cohen himself was not charged criminally, he is still under investigation and has been sued by the Securities and Exchange Commission in a civil case. He has maintained his innocence.
Cohen was reluctant, but agreed to attend the events after Christie's personal appeal, Gasparino's source said. Not only was he seen at the 2,400-person victory celebration at Asbury Park Convention Hall, he also was reportedly one of only a handful of people invited to attend a small private dinner afterward.
Christie's campaign said Cohen was at the larger event, but did not comment on the dinner.
Gasparino said Thursday on Fox News Channel's "Your World with Neil Cavuto"
that he had confirmed five people were at that dinner. At most, he said, six were at the table.
The big concern, Gasparino told Cavuto, would be opponents of Christie in the GOP primaries or in the general election using the information to make him look bad.
"Hanging with Steve Cohen certainly doesn't make Christie a man of the people," political analyst Hank Sheinkopf told Fox Business. "It could make a great negative ad for Republican opponents, not to mention Democrats who will raise the point he's getting involved with Wall Street people who might have done bad stuff."
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