Oroho calls for vetting of Attorney General nominee Platkin over debauchery of Katie Brennan’s sexual assault case

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Senate Republican Leader Steven Oroho and Senator Michael Doherty said the Senate Judiciary Committee must perform a thorough vetting of Attorney General nominee Matt Platkin, including his handling of Katie Brennan’s alleged sexual assault and his role in guiding the Murphy Administration’s extensive use of emergency powers during the pandemic.

According to his professional business biography, Platkin received his law degree from Stanford in 2014.

“Matt served as Chief Counsel to New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy. In this role, he managed a team of over 20 lawyers in reviewing and approving all legislation and executive and administrative actions before the governor. In addition to reviewing actions taken by 20 departments and over 50 state authorities, he was responsible for retaining and supervising outside counsel on internal investigations and coordinating with the Attorney General’s office on a variety of affirmative litigation matters,” Lowenstein Sandler’s website states. “During his tenure as Chief Counsel, Matt oversaw all legal matters related to the COVID-19 pandemic for the State of New Jersey. In this capacity, he managed the drafting of over 80 executive orders and numerous administrative orders pertaining to the state’s emergency response to the pandemic. Without losing a single matter, he contributed to over two dozen litigations arising from the pandemic, including cases filed in both federal and state court and before the New Jersey Supreme Court. He also oversaw reforms of state workforce policies affecting 65,000 employees in order to maintain government services during the pandemic.”

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“We have extremely serious concerns about Matt’s handling of Katie Brennan’s allegations of sexual assault and the guidance he provided Governor Murphy as chief counsel on the use of emergency powers during the pandemic,” said Oroho (R-24). “Matt is obviously a very smart guy, but he shouldn’t expect a free pass to avoid the scrutiny a nominee for Attorney General deserves.”

Oroho and Doherty noted the concerns raised by Brennan following Platkin’s nomination.

In a Tweet, Brennan said, “This decision is deeply disappointing and sends a terrible message to survivors of sexual violence. New Jersey deserves an AG representing the highest standards of ethics and the legal profession. We can do better.”

Doherty also expressed concern regarding Platkin’s lack of prior law enforcement experience.

“To the best of my knowledge, Mr. Platkin has never worked in law enforcement in any capacity and doesn’t have any experience in criminal justice or as a prosecutor,” added Doherty (R-23), the ranking member of the Senate Judiciary Committee. “I’m not sure being a close associate of Governor Murphy is enough to qualify him to lead the largest and most important law enforcement department in New Jersey. We’re looking forward to having that discussion with him.”