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Tough guy Chris Christie didn’t follow through on his anti-refugee rhetoric.

Justin Sullivan / Getty Images

Usually it’s a bad, disappointing thing when politicians lie about their intentions. In this case, it’s a little harder to call: While Chris Christie infamously talked a big game about his intent to direct New Jersey’s Department of Human Services not to aid or resettle Syrian refugees, Politico New Jersey reports an open records request found no such order issued from Christie’s office. Aside from a letter from Christie’s office to the Obama administration, Christie sent no written request to DHS asking or ordering them to alter their usual work. 

This makes Christie’s course of action distinct from, say, that of the Texas state government, which really did send a letter out through the state’s Health and Human Services Commission demanding that all non-profits with refugee services suspend aid to Syrian refugees specifically. 

Not that the state government of Texas, or Christie for that matter, has the authority to make or enforce that kind of request, which is against federal law. Still the record should reflect that Christie doesn’t even have the courage of his bad convictions.