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After failing to win a primary in his bid for reelection, Wildstein left politics for his family’s textile company, Apache Mills, a global manufacturer of floor mats. Wildstein served as an executive at the company from the late 1980s until 2007.
But Wildstein never retreated from politics. He advised Republican politicians like U.S. Representative Bob Franks and in 2000 founded PolitickerNJ, a New Jersey political news website, which bills itself as “a virtual watercooler for the state’s political elite.” Wildstein offered juicy scoops on state politics under the pen name “Wally Edge,” a nod to Republican Governor Walter Edge, who helped create the Port Authority in 1921. Wildstein sold the site in 2007, but the identity of Wally Edge remained a closely guarded – but much discussed – secret until his 2010 appointment to the Port Authority.
“I’ve never met anybody … with more thorough institutional knowledge of New Jersey politics,” Steve Kornacki told Politico.
Kornacki who got his start in journalism under Wildstein and now hosts a weekend show on MSNBC.
Further internet mischief was traced to Wildstein last month, when The Record revealed that he had purchased internet domain names of several public officials in recent years. The names he reserved included Barbara Buono, Christie’s gubernatorial challenger, and Port Authority Executive Director Pat Foye.
Wildstein’s motives in purchasing the names are unclear. Most of the URL names he purchased redirect users to the homepage of the Yankees, his favorite baseball team.