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Governor Phil Murphy and First Lady Tammy Murphy attend the Pride Parade hosted by the Rustin Center on Saturday, June 22, 2019. (Photo: Edwin J. Torres/ Governor’s Office).

Governor has no comment on parkway Chick-Fil-A controversy

Says that he is proud of New Jersey’s record on LGBTQ+ community

By Joey Fox, February 23 2022 4:30 pm

In response to a controversial plan to host fast-food chain Chick-fil-A at a revamped rest stop on the Garden State Parkway, Gov. Phil Murphy said he had no specific comment but that he is supportive in general of the state’s LGBTQ+ community.

“I only have tangentially heard of the Chick-fil-A contract,” he said, “I would put our record on the LGBTQIA+ community up against any American state, and we wear that as a badge of honor. [But] I don’t have any particular insight on the potential contract.”

As part of its renovation of the Brookdale South rest stop in Bloomfield, the New Jersey Turnpike Authority agreed to let Chick-fil-A, which is well-known for its history of supporting anti-gay politicians and organizations, to operate a restaurant along the parkway.

But Bloomfield Mayor Michael Venezia excoriated the plan, saying that allowing the chain to set up shop went against his town’s values.

“Bloomfield is a diverse community accepting of all races, religions and sexual orientations, which is the antithesis of what this chain stands for,” Venezia said in a statement.

While Murphy had little to say today, he has previously used state investment as a cudgel against businesses with objectionable views. Last year, after Ben and Jerry’s said it would stop selling its ice cream in Israeli-occupied territories, New Jersey joined several other states in divesting from Unilever, the parent company of Ben and Jerry’s.

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