New Jersey's 26th Legislative District

Senator Joe Pennacchio

Senator Joe Pennacchio

Governor Evading COVID Questions is Nothing New

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Pennacchio Credits Media for Finally Demanding Answers

After the Governor repeatedly dodged media questions about the reporting of new positive COVID cases, Senator Joe Pennacchio said it was not unexpected.

After the Governor repeatedly dodged media questions about the reporting of new positive COVID cases, Sen. Joe Pennacchio said the Administration has demonstrated a total disregard for transparency. (SenateNJ.com)

“The Governor has been disingenuous to New Jersey residents,” said Pennacchio (R-26). “He holds his press conference, and he does his usual routine, but he isn’t forthcoming with information the public deserves to hear. Too many questions remain unanswered.

“The Administrations total disregard for transparency is unacceptable,” said Pennacchio. “To get the explanations and answers state residents deserve requires legislative hearings by a Senate Select Committee with subpoena powers.”

Pennacchio cited examples of Murphy’s lack of candor:

  • Never supplied science of data on picking winners and losers in closing businesses
  • Never explained why both New York and New Jersey had exact directives forcing nursing homes to accept COVID patients, and never explained why facilities were prohibited from testing new admissions
  • Never allowed the State’s epidemiologist to say whether she agreed or disagreed with directives
  • Still not forthcoming with Open Public Records Act requests, hiding behind the skirt of the Emergency Health Powers Act of 2005
  • Has not explained why his Administration did not cooperate initially with the Department of Justice looking into Nursing Home deaths, resulting in an investigation by the DOJ’s Civil Rights Division into the veterans homes in Menlo Park, Paramus and Vineland under the Civil Rights of Institutionalized Persons Act
  • Failed to explain why federal money was left sitting on the sidelines while almost 40 percent of businesses failed, and an outdated unemployment computer system could have been updated
  • Never explained why he considered the COVID virus more dangerous at 10 p.m., warranting restaurants to close
  • Even his own Department of Health employees questioned the science and data driving the Administrations decisions
  • Did not divulge conversations he had with the Department of Health after learning that the day their directive forcing nursing homes to accept patients and not test them, nursing home administrators warned the department that nursing homes could not segregate and isolate those patients, and told the health commissioner “patients will die”
  • Refused to explain to the people of New Jersey how even after the most restrictive COVID shutdown rules in the U.S., the Star-Ledger reported that if New Jersey was a country we would have the highest per capita death rate in the world

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