A short time before voters decide whether to re-elect Murphy on Nov. 2 elections, Republicans are calling the Democratic governor a hypocrite because he was recently photographed not wearing a mask at two large indoor events.
”The people of New Jersey are being told by this administration that they must comply, don’t ask questions, or get labeled a knucklehead or worse, while those demanding compliance flout the very policies they push,” said state Sen. Holly Schepisi, R-Bergen. “It is the height of hypocrisy, and it is wrong.”
As reported by nj.com, the Democratic Governor has said the criticism against him is “ridiculous. “ He suggested the situation is more nuanced than Republicans are painting. Others point out the irony of the judgment because, despite recommendations from health authorities, numerous Republican leaders in New Jersey have been opposed to mask rules.
The Garden State was among the first entities to install a mask mandate and one of the last states to lift it. And when federal officials re-tightened guidelines this summer, Murphy said all New Jerseyans are now “strongly recommended” to wear face coverings in indoor settings.
This all comes as Republicans try to gain ground against Phil Murphy, who has led Jack Ciattarelli in all public-opinion polls.
Key election issue
Numerous polls have shown the pandemic to be a key issue in the race, with a majority of New Jersey citizens supporting how the Democratic governor has responded to the crisis. However Republicans claim that Murphy has not only been too drastic but has also mishandled the crisis, with more than 8,000 deaths in nursing homes and more than a third of the state’s small businesses closing.
In their debate Tuesday night, Ciattarelli said that the governor and others were maskless at an indoor ball hosted by Garden State Equality in Asbury Park last Friday.
None of those who attended were technically breaking state rules. Murphy’s administration ended its mask mandate for most public places in late May. And people at the gala were required to present proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test to get in.