TRENTON, NJ – Disturbing images from Trenton released on Monday show Governor Phil Murphy’s use of U.S. Army National Guard troops to assist in his political pandemic fight against Republics were shocking, even for this Marine Corps veteran.
National Guard troops in the state capitol on Monday assisted the Murphy administration and state Democrats erect Department of Health approved COVID-19 testing center and checkpoints in order to block anyone who isn’t vaccinated from the state’s capitol building, especially elected Republican officials.
Today, a spokeswoman for Governor Phil Murphy’s office said those troops were not deployed to assist the State Police in a COVID-19 vaccination crackdown but were at the state capitol building to assist only in the construction of the security checkpoints necessary to enforce the new vaccine mandate at the building.
“The National Guard was at the State House yesterday to assist with the setup and breakdown of a DOH testing tent. They were not there for security reasons. The State Police is always at the State House,” said Murphy spokeswoman Alyana Alfaro.
Alfaro reminded that the crackdown is compliant with Murphy’s June State of Emergency Declaration which extended his pandemic executive powers beyond their expiration.
She said the National Guard would not be enforcing vaccination mandate security, but were just used, essentially as day laborers to deploy the security checkpoints for the state troopers who would be deployed at those checkpoints to enforce the vaccine passport and mandate.
Alfaro said the new crackdown at the state capitol is not a vaccine mandate and vaccines are not required to gain entry. Guests either have to show proof of vaccination or get tested before entry.
“Vaccinations are not required to enter the State House. Under the State Capitol Joint Management Commission’s policy, negative tests will also be accepted,” she said. “Rapid tests have been made available to Legislators who choose not to show proof of vaccination. They are also allowed to vote remotely, per the policy. Please contact the Legislature for more on their policy.”
Correction: Article incorrectly identified Department of Health with Department of Homeland Security.