New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy is planning to implement a vaccine mandate if the Democrat is re-elected to office next Tuesday.
That’s according to Project Veritas, which released an undercover video of Wendy Martinez, a senior advisor for the governor, saying Murphy will impose a vaccine mandate like California’s after the election. In July, Gov. Gavin Newson required that all state employees and health care workers must show proof of vaccination or get tested regularly, and announced earlier this month California would be the first state to require schoolchildren to be vaccinated once full approval is given by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
“He’s [Phil Murphy] going to do it [vaccine mandates], but he couldn’t do it before the elections,” Martinez told an undercover Project Veritas reporter in Spanish.
Speaking of independent voters possibly not voting for Murphy, his advisor said, “They’re into all the sh*t. My rights, my sh*t. They don’t care if they kill everybody.”
Asked if Murphy will mandate COVID-19 vaccinations after the election, Martinez stated, “He will. But right now is about him winning [reelection]. It will be fine.”
James O’Keefe, the founder of Project Veritas, states in the video: “Project Veritas has obtained hidden camera recordings inside Gov. Phil Murphy’s campaign, including from a senior advisor, who admits to hiding information from voters until after the election in order to appeal to undecided and moderate voters.”
O’Keefe noted that “this appears to be a top-down understanding,” as he pointed to Matthew Urquijo, manager of a coordinated campaign called Forward 2021 funded by the New Jersey Democratic State Committee.
“I think the problem is right now — because it’s election season – he is not going to have people say like, ‘We’re gonna have a mandate now,’” Urquijo is heard saying in the footage. “Because, you know, for some people that’s going to piss them off. I think once, you know, we have a win, he’s like, ‘Alright, guns blazing, like, who cares, I’m in it. Let’s do the mandates, let’s do this, X, Y, and Z.’”
Murphy campaign manager Mollie Binotto and Democratic State Committee executive director Saily Avelenda claimed Project Veritas intimidated and harassed staff and called on Republican gubernatorial candidate Jack Ciattarelli to denounce O’Keefe, New Jersey 101.5 reported.
“It is absolutely outrageous for the safety of our team to be compromised by luring women into a dark parking garage and ambushing them, causing serious distress and trauma at a time when people working on all campaigns should be allowed to do their jobs without fearing for their safety,” they said. “This is criminal harassment, plain and simple.”
Responding to the Project Veritas video release, the Ciattarelli campaign released a statement that read, in part: “If true, this is the ultimate hypocrisy and an appalling lack of transparency. Our campaign has long suggested that the Governor was too willing to put political science before actual science during this pandemic.”
Ciattarelli Campaign Statement on Project Veritas Video ⬇️ pic.twitter.com/lhgkd30Fsf
— Stami Williams (@StamiLW) October 26, 2021
NJGOP executive director Tom Szymanski also issued a statement about the “extremely disturbing video.”
“This extremely disturbing video appears to confirm what the Murphy campaign has been hinting at – and the NJGOP has been warning about – throughout the summer: that a second Murphy term will bring about the same type of vaccine passports seen in Bill de Blasio’s New York, burdening already suffering businesses and discriminating against minority communities in which immunization rates are lower,” Szymanski said, according to New Jersey 101.5.
NJ State Assemblyman Jamel Holley responded to the Project Veritas video in a tweet decrying that “public health is not a political issue.”
“It has come to my attention that Governor Murphy will impose #Covid_19 vaccine mandates statewide if he is re-elected. Public health is not a political issue. Medical decisions are a choice and should be treated as such for every individual. Not election timing,” he tweeted.
It has come to my attention that Governor Murphy will impose #Covid_19 vaccine mandates statewide if he is re-elected.
Public health is not a political issue. Medical decisions are a choice and should be treated as such for every individual. Not election timing. https://t.co/4rap4vJxIs
— Jamel Holley (@jamelholley) October 26, 2021
In a follow-up tweet, Holley called for the state legislature to render all public health emergency orders from Murphy null and void.
“With this revelation, I am calling on the NJ Legislature to enforce its powers & remove all public health emergencies from the Governor they granted earlier this year and give the opportunity for individuals to make a choice for themselves. Now we know it’s political,” he tweeted, along with the hashtag #NoMandates.
With this revelation, I am calling on the NJ Legislature to enforce its powers & remove all public health emergencies from the Governor they granted earlier this year and give the opportunity for individuals to make a choice for themselves. #NoMandates Now we know it’s political
— Jamel Holley (@jamelholley) October 26, 2021
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