Is pointing out the obvious now a grave offense? Apparently, it may be the eyes of Phil Murphy, who criticized the Republican Party Tuesday for what he described as playing the “crime card relentlessly and shamelessly.”
Murphy made the charge during MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” after host Mika Brzezinski brought up a recent Gallup poll that ranked crime as a top issue among voters.
“Do Democrats have a hold on the crime narrative or are they having trouble getting the message out?” Brzezinski asked Murphy.
“The other guys play the crime card relentlessly and shamelessly it seems every election. And the facts and their portrayal of the facts are in entirely different places. That doesn’t mean that crime is not an issue. It doesn’t mean that we’re not focused on it. But I will just say in New Jersey, this year, violent crimes, shootings, and homicides are all down meaningfully between something like 15 and 30%,” Murphy said in his response.
“We invest deeply, not just here but as a party in the relations between law enforcement and the communities they serve. We invest in law enforcement, so they’re really good at playing the card,” continued the New Jersey governor, before he implied that Republicans are pointing out trends in rising crime because they are somehow racists who hate black people. “It reminds me, frankly, it goes back to Nixon’s ‘Southern Strategy.’ It’s got racial elements to it. Let’s just call that for what it is.”
Kathy Hochul, who governs the state neighboring Murphy’s home of New Jersey, similarly slammed conservatives last month, saying they are “master manipulators” who “have this conspiracy going all across America trying to convince people that in Democratic states, they’re not as safe.” She then said that Republicans are “not only election deniers” but additionally “data deniers.”
In response to these claims, the conservative tabloid New York Post put out a cover ridiculing the unelected governor, picturing her wearing a tinfoil hat and a headline that read “KRAZY KAT.”
It appears the American people are not buying the rebuttals of Murphy and Hochul against GOP claims of increasing crime. A total of 64% of Americans are currently blaming historic crime increases on “woke politicians,” according to an October poll by Harvard-Harris.
Murphy, much like Hochul, has been routinely attacked for his stances on crime, especially by his former opponent during the 2021 New Jersey gubernatorial election.
“Once again, Governor Phil Murphy’s response, this time on New Jersey’s rising crime rate, is totally unacceptable and profoundly embarrassing,” posted then-Republican candidate Jack Ciattarelli in June of 2021. “There is one reason crime is on the rise and it’s not the pandemic, the heat, the humidity, or any other made-up excuse – it’s Murphy.”
Once again, Governor Phil Murphy’s response, this time on New Jersey’s rising crime rate, is totally unacceptable and profoundly embarrassing. There is one reason crime is on the rise and it's not the pandemic, the heat, the humidity, or any other made-up excuse – it's Murphy.
— Jack Ciattarelli (@Jack4NJ) June 23, 2021