Insider NJ Key Must-Read Pieces: An Unprecedented Week


Here are the key must-read pieces from Insider NJ over the past week – an unprecedented week in state history, as Governor Murphy directed the state’s 9M residents to stay home amid the COVID-10 pandemic.

‘We’re at War’: Governor Murphy Orders Nine Million New Jerseyans to Stay Home

Combating the COVID-19 virus, Governor Phil Murphy this afternoon at Rutgers Law School in Newark announced signing an executive order for nine million NJ residents to stay at home

‘We Will Take Action’ to Enforce Stay At Home Order, Governor Vows

Governor Phil Murphy offered only anecdotal information, but he said he had heard enough to be concerned, saying that in some cases, he was “exceedingly disappointed.”

A Kindly Uncle Toughening in a Time of Crisis

Phil Murphy often comes across as a kindly uncle who logically suggests why people during this time of crisis should do the right thing.

Turnpike Authority Hearings: An Insult to the Intelligence of the Public

Amid an escalating medical crisis, it’s “comforting” to know how determined some in the great Garden State are to conduct business as usual.

The Empty Diner Booth and Other Covid-19 Considerations

In what clearly is a microcosm of a state gripped in coronavirus-panic, the streets were mostly devoid of people on a rather pleasant Monday afternoon.

Murphy: “Please Stay Home… And Let’s Stay Compassionate to One Another’

“Our prayers are with these blessed souls and their families,” said the Governor. “Stay inside if you do not need to be out. All employees must work from home.”

Murphy to New Jersey: ‘Please, Please, Please Just Stay at Home’

Announcing 80 new cases in the state (including an infected five-year old) after a weekend when many New Jerseyans shrugged off warnings about interacting with one another, Governor Phil Murphy stepped up Covid-19 crisis footing in New Jersey this afternoon.

Enforcement will be a Big Issue

Acting via executive order, Murphy said all non-essential businesses must close and that residents must stay in their homes in just about all cases. Still, this does not seem to be an iron-fisted decree.

When will Politics as Usual Resume?

Amid the onslaught of medical news, it is becoming easy to forget what, if anything, is happening politically.

All Special Elections and School Board Elections this Year will be VBM

Governor Phil Murphy this afternoon announced that he signed an executive order allowing candidate petitions to be submitted electronically by the March 30th deadline, and changing upcoming special and school board elections to VBM-only.

Murphy on Trump: ‘I’ll Leave History to the Historians’

Just how does he evaluate Donald Trump’s performance regarding COVID-19, the governor was asked at his Wednesday press briefing. More bluntly, is the president a help or a hindrance?

Murphy Resists CNN Invitation to Slap Trump over Covid-19 Crisis Response

CNN Situation Room host Wolf Blitzer this evening asked Governor Phil Murphy to react to President Donald J. Trump grading his response to the coronavirus a 10 out of 10.

Hudson Politics with Covid-19: No More Door-to-Door

With several local seats being challenged in a primary as well as a possibility of New Jersey playing a role in selecting the next Democratic nominee for president, the virus is more than a little plague on politics.

Live to Fight Another (St. Patrick’s) Day, Says Murphy

Phil Murphy enjoys joking about drinking. More than once I have heard him make cracks about the tendency of guys named “Murphy” to imbibe. Sure, this is an offensive Irish stereotype, but the governor seems to think it is harmless.

Unity in Bipartisan Times Only Goes so Far

The country may be politically united – somewhat at least – when it comes to fighting the coronavirus, but unity in these bipartisan times goes only so far.

Monday Morning in USA of Corona: Leadership and Faith in Times of Tribulation

In Neptune the pre-sunrise soundscape was a familiar comfort. Closing my eyes, it was just like any other morning in this seaside town.

We are a Lot Different than China – It’s Called Democracy

At the very end of Tuesday’s press briefing, the governor was asked about ordering residents to “shelter in place.”

Leaders Lead

It is during this time that we count on our leaders – political, community, spiritual, corporate and others to summon their inner leadership skills. We need to take a moment and let our leaders lead.

Kim Announces Self-Quarantine Following Contact with Positive Member of Congress

Congressman Andy Kim (D-3) announced that he will self-quarantine for two-weeks following direct contact with a member of Congress who has tested positive for COVID-19.

Bergen County Executive Mourns Third Loss, Outlines Further Closures, Predicts Law Enforcement Infections

“It wasn’t raining when Noah built the ark… but when the flood came, he was prepared.” Bergen County Executive James Tedesco announced at a press conference Thursday evening that Bergen County had “Identified 194 – 205 presumptive positive cases as of this afternoon.

Tedesco Rescinds Executive Order Declaring State of Emergency in Bergen County At the Request of the Governor

Bergen County Executive Jim Tedesco today rescinded his Executive Order 2020-1B at the request of the Governor.

‘If You Want To Put Money Over Somebody’s Life, Then Shame On You’: Bergen’s Tedesco Announces Additional Restrictions

“If anyone wants to challenge my decisions, that is their right,” he said. But he was firm in his convictions that he was acting to defend the public health and save lives.

Just Who is Essential in NJ’s COVID-19 Battle?

In just a matter of a week the state of New Jersey has had to put itself on a wartime footing in hopes of defeating the invisible, yet deadly coronavirus that’s claimed thousands of lives around the world including dozens in the region.

Social Distancing in a Crisis – Get Used to it, New Jersey

The Center for Disease Control has made clear that social distancing—remaining out of congregate settings, avoiding mass gatherings, and maintaining distance (approximately 6 feet or 2 meters) from others when possible—is a critical practice to slow the transmission of Coronavirus in our state

InsiderNJ Editorial: ‘Time Must have a Stop’

We must stay in place in a place where we trained ourselves to believe that if we stay in place we’ll die.

Vitale Urges Governor to Close Day Care Centers to Protect Public Health

Senator Joe Vitale, the chairman of the Senate Health Committee, issued the following statement today urging Governor Phil Murphy to close day care centers in New Jersey, extending the same public health measures that already cover public and private schools and Pre-K programs throughout the state.

NJ at Doorstep of Closing Daycare Centers Amid Fears about Pre-K Children Vulnerability

The state Department of Health and Department of Children and Families are at this moment developing plans to close daycare centers in New Jersey while creating provisions to serve the pre-K age children of first responders, according to state Senator Joe Vitale (D-19), who chairs the Senate Health Committee.

Murphy Amid Climbing Covid-19 Cases: ‘Find Ways to Keep Your Distance’

Seeking more personal protective equipment from the feds, Governor Phil Murphy this afternoon reported an additional 89 positive test result cases of Covid-19, for a statewide total of 267 confirmed cases of the deadly virus.

Murphy: 318 New Cases of COVID-19; Bringing Official Total to 742; Four Deaths in 24 Hours, Inc. Bergen Man in 30s

Described by a healthcare professional here as the most disruptive force he has ever seen in 35 years in the industry, the pandemic in New Jersey includes 318 additional positive test results for COVID-19 in New Jersey.

Baraka: Covid-19 Case in EO At-Large After Giving False Name, Address

A woman who checked into East Orange General Hospital under a false name and address and tested positive for the coronavirus and disappeared is at large today, according to Newark Mayor Ras Baraka.

Fulop Tweets ‘Big Waste of Time When These Big Corporations Think They’ll Get Different Rules’

Following his declaration of a state of emergency and executive order closing a wide swath of businesses, Jersey City Mayor Fulop tweeted in response to a complaint that Newport Center was refusing to close in compliance with the EO.

Saddle Brook Mayor White Statement on Passing of Resident From Complications of COVID-19, State’s Third Death

I had hoped and prayed that Saddle Brook would be spared from this day, but sadly the day has come. A 90 year old male resident has passed away from complications due to COVID-19 (Coronavirus).

Piscataway Mayor Wahler Calls for Two Month Extension For 2020 Census

With the next ten years of federal funding on the line and communities upended by the coronavirus outbreak, Piscataway Mayor Brian C. Wahler is calling on federal authorities to extend the Census submission deadline for two months.

Sources: Clerks Leaning Toward All-VBM Elections in Covid-19 Crisis Year

County clerks this week – on an urgent, accelerated time line – are trying to figure out how to hold an election while combating the Covid-19 virus.

Atlantic County Dems Chairman Suleiman Wants an All-VBM Primary

Atlantic County Democratic Chairman Michael Suleiman today called for the State of New Jersey to institute all mail-in voting for the June 2, 2020 primary election.

Senate Poised for Assembly Chamber Appearance, with COVID-19 Logistics Hanging Over Session

Sources continue to express bewilderment and gallows irony about public officials’ insistence on cramming tables and stages to lecture the public about avoiding one another and maintaining social distancing.

Gopal to Introduce Hospitality Emergency Loan Legislation

Senator Vin Gopal today announced that he will introduce legislation establishing a New Jersey Hospitality Emergency Loan Program, which would provide immediate financial assistance for struggling hospitality businesses during the COVID-19 emergency.

Sweeney Introduces New Jersey Educators Health Plan to Save Billions of Dollars for Taxpayers, Educators

Senate President Steve Sweeney introduced landmark legislation to implement a new health benefits plan designed to produce more than $1 billion in annualized savings for property taxpayers and educators.

Senate Advances Landmark Health Savings Plan

Landmark legislation to implement a new health benefits plan designed to produce more than $1 billion in annual savings for property taxpayers and educators gained the approval of the Senate today.

Singleton to Introduce Legislation to Protect Small Business Employees

Senator Troy Singleton (D-7) will introduce legislation to extend the right to be reinstated to employment following paid or unpaid family leave to small business employees.

LD39 Assemblywoman Schepisi Tests Negative For COVID-19

The Holy Name Hospital VP had announced on Sunday evening that she was under self-quarantine after developing symptoms following exposure to people who were in direct contact with someone who has coronavirus.

Assemblyman Calabrese Tests Positive For COVID-19

LD36 Assemblyman Clinton Calabrese (D-Bergen, Passaic) has tested positive for coronavirus after taking a drive-through swab test at Bergen New Bridge Medical Center upon the recommendation of his doctor Tuesday March 17.

NJ LGBTQ+ Leaders Announce Support of Biden Campaign

A prominent list of LGBTQ+ leaders from across New Jersey have announced their support of Vice President Joe Biden’s Presidential campaign, organized by Joe Forte, member of Biden’s LGBTQ+ Finance Council.

Hamm Submits 2.5K Petition Signatures Toward His Senate Candidacy

Larry Hamm today at 3:40 p.m. delivered petitions containing more than 2500 signatures to the NJ Division of Elections office at 20 West State Street in Trenton.

Insider NJ Flashback: That Time Christie Todd Whitman Was On Law And Order SVU

The episode, which aired on April 28th, was the 19th of the series’ first season and was titled ‘Contact’ and the plot centered on the squad’s efforts to capture a serial subway rapist.

Unity with Bernie Sanders: The Task for Us Biden Democrats

One month ago, no one in the Democratic Party, probably including Joe Biden himself, thought he had a chance in hell. Today he is the presumptive Presidential nominee months earlier than anyone had expected the party to make its choice.

Dem Establishment Overcomes Hand-Wringing to Close Ranks Behind Biden

The Democratic Party establishment got what it wanted — a presidential nominee who’s a charter member of the club, knows the secret handshake, reveres the old school necktie and — most importantly — as President can be relied upon to consult with and seek the wisdom and counsel of the entrenched establishment leaders.

The Best Biden Lineup: VP Whitmer, AG Harris, Justice Abrams

Joe Biden is a huge favorite now not only for the Democratic presidential nomination, but also for the presidency itself in November.

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