After the lane closings were reversed by New York officials at the Port Authority, New Jersey officials expressed panic that their plan was not causing enough trouble.
"The New York side gave Fort Lee back all three lanes this morning. We are appropriately going nuts," Mr. Wildstein wrote to Ms. Kelly. "Samson helping us to retaliate."
"What??" she emailed back.
"Yes, unreal. Fixed now," he emailed.
Mr. Sokolich texted Mr. Baroni later that month seeking to understand why the lanes were closed, and said that people were saying it was "punishment."
"Try as I may to dispel these rumors I am having a tough time," he wrote.
Mr. Baroni, Ms. Kelly and Mr. Wildstein showed some alarm, swearing and discussing how they could avoid Mr. Sokolich while also quieting the growing controversy.
Earlier this week, the Democratic mayor of Jersey City, Steve Fulop, said the governor's office had canceled meetings with him after he informed them he would not endorse the governor for re-election.
Mr. Christie's associates had been pressing hard on Mr. Fulop, a rising star in the Democratic Party who took office in July, but he resisted before finally endorsing Ms. Buono.
The emails show that Mr. Fulop's decision did not sit well with the governor's office. Mr. Christie's aides and the Port Authority officials talked about how they were refusing to return the telephone calls from Mr. Sokolich, the Fort Lee mayor. "Radio silence," Mr. Wildstein wrote to Ms. Kelly in an email. "His name comes right after mayor Fulop."
The documents released Wednesday are heavily redacted by Mr. Wildstein, who turned them over under a subpoena from Democratic legislators investigating the lane closings, making it hard to determine in some cases who is speaking.
But they indicate that Mr. Christie's staff, appointees at the Port Authority and members of his campaign staff were all intimately involved in discussing the growing scandal and how to react to it as early as October. One series of text messages between Ms. Kelly and Mr. Wildstein indicates that in early August, at the same time they were discussing the plan for the lane closings, they were trying to set up a meeting between Mr. Christie and Mr. Samson. It is not clear, however, that the meeting was regarding the lane closings, although later emails make clear that Mr. Samson was involved in those plans.
Mr. Baroni and Mr. Wildstein resigned their positions in December as the Port Authority's executive deputy director and director of interstate capital projects, respectively, as the scandal threatened Mr. Christie's political fortunes.
—By Kate Zernike for The New York Times.