TRENTON, NJ – New Jersey Republican Assemblyman Brian Bergen appeared in person at the Statehouse in Trenton to slam state Democrats who are turning a blind eye to Phil Murphy’s latest pandemic power grab.
“I’m hoping that we can close out this legislative session like we began, a co-equal branch of the state of New Jersey’s government,” Bergen said. “Governor Murphy ruled by executive fiat for nearly our entire session.”
In July, the Democrat majority of the legislature voted to end the public health emergency but extended Murphy’s executive powers through January 11, 2022.
“I told you at the time that the bill had no teeth and was no better than a handshake deal,” Bergen said. “Today is the last day of the extended powers that you gave the governor and it’s your last day to grant the governor an extension of those powers. It’s come to my attention sir that the senate has failed to pass the resolution necessary to extend those powers, no sooner Governor Murphy announced that the statewide masking mandate would remain in place for the quote-unquote foreseeable future.”B
Bergen cautioned of the dangers that lie ahead for New Jersey if the governor executes a new pandemic public health emergency.
“The only way he can do this is by putting us back in a public health emergency,” Bergen said. “He can’t do any more executive orders at this point. Without doing that, he must put us back in a public health emergency by tomorrow to keep his word.”
Republicans proposed a Bergen-sponsored bill, A4147 that would limit any future public health emergency orders to just 14 days before being reviewed and approved by the legislators. State Democrats refused to introduce the bill for a vote. Bergen said the Democrats are now complicit going forward in allowing the governor to usurp the duly elected bodies in the assembly and senate.