Bergen County Sheriff Michael Saudino was caught on a secret recording making racist comments about black people and Attorney General Gurbir Grewal, who is a Sikh. So now, naturally, Gov. Phil Murphy wants him to resign from his position, because is anyone who really harbors these thoughts fit to serve the community?
Local news station WNYC acquired the recordings that were taken on Jan. 16, following Murphy’s inauguration as governor. He was heard relaying what Murphy’s speech was about to his colleagues.
“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 f–k they want, smoke their marijuana, do this do that, and don’t worry about it. You know, we’ll tie the hands of cops.”
Later he then complains about Murphy’s appointment of Grewal, who he said was only selected because of “the turban.”
Mind you, Grewal is someone who Saudino has worked closely with, as before his appointment Grewal was the lead prosecutor in Bergen County.
“On a personal level what he said, if it’s true and accurate, is disappointing, because I think having worked with him for two years he would know better than most that I have law enforcement credentials,” Grewal said of the remarks.
As for the comments about black people and marijuana, Grewal called them “horrifying” noting that they effectively mar efforts in building police-community relations.
Saudino, who is a Democrat, did not respond to questions about the recording as of Thursday, but he released a statement apologizing for the remarks, throwing in the usual trop of a racist that the comments “are not representative of the person that I am.”
But, he seems adamant keeping his job, and is not up for reelection until next year. Nonetheless, fellow Democrats are demanding he resign, including, as noted, Murphy.
“Without question, the comments made on that recording are appalling, and anyone using racist, homophobic, and hateful language is unfit for public office,” the Democratic governor said in a statement. “If indeed that is Sheriff Saudino’s voice on the recording, he must resign.”