The Slatest

New Jersey Sheriff Said Racist Things on Tape, and Now the Governor Wants Him to Resign

New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy speaking at a New Jersey sportsbook.
New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy.
DOMINICK REUTER/Getty Images

Bergen County Sheriff Michael Saudino did not think highly of the inauguration of Phil Murphy as governor of New Jersey.

“He talked about the whole thing, the marijuana, sanctuary state … better criminal justice reform. Christ almighty, in other words, let the blacks come in, do whatever the fuck they want, smoke their marijuana, do this, do that, and don’t worry about it. You know, we’ll tie the hands of cops,” he said on a tape recording from January obtained by WNYC. Murphy ran on a platform that included legalizing marijuana.

Murphy’s swearing in was not the only one to outrage Saudino that day. There was also Murphy’s hand-picked attorney general, Gurbir Grewal, who had previously been a prosecutor in Bergen County and worked with Saudino. Grewal is the first Sikh attorney general in America. “[Murphy] didn’t do that because of Bergen County; he did that because of the turban,” Saudino said on the tape.

Murphy said in a statement to WNYC, “If indeed that is Sheriff Saudino’s voice on the recording,” he should resign.