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New Jersey Republican State Chairman Doug Steinhardt speaks at a rally for President Donald Trump in Wildwood on January 28, 2020. (Photo: Kevin Sanders for New Jersey Globe)

Steinhardt: Murphy appearance at BLM protest opportunistic

Republican state chair claims governor picking ‘constitutional winners and losers’

By Nikita Biryukov, June 08 2020 11:16 am

Republican State Chairman Doug Steinhardt attacked Gov. Phil Murphy over appearances at Black Lives Matter protests he made this weekend, claiming the governor was ignoring restrictions on gatherings that he imposed.

“None can dispute the call for justice for George Floyd. None can dispute the push to answer that call,” Steinhardt said. “Yet, Governor Murphy blurs lines between protests worthy of participation and those deserving prosecution, by picking constitutional winners and losers in the same way he picked economic ones

On Sunday, Murphy appeared at Black Lives Matter protests against police brutality in Hillside and Westfield.

The appearances have drawn some criticism from Republicans in the state who claim Murphy is selectively enforcing executive orders based on political alignment.

In the past months, organizers of anti-lockdown protests have been cited with violating executive orders, but no such charges have been mounted against BLM organizers.

“The DOH whistleblowers from Governor Murphy’s own administration described him best when they called him a political opportunist,” Steinhardt said. “He has canceled church services, in person voting and shuttered countless small businesses in the name of social distancing, but when he saw the opportunity for a photo op this weekend, he stood shoulder to shoulder, literally, with thousands of protestors.”

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