AP Photo/Mark Humphrey

Governor’s Wife Hits NRA in First Campaign Ad for NJ Senate Seat

This might be Tammy Murphy’s first campaign as a candidate, but she’s not a political neophyte or stranger to politics. She’s married to New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy, which apparently is the only qualification she thinks she needs to run for the U.S. Senate seat currently held by Bob Menendez. And in her first campaign ad, she borrowed liberally from her husband’s anti-gun agenda, declaring it her mission to “take down the NRA”. 

“This is the NRA’s world headquarters. It’s where cowards work,” she declares in the ad over grainy driveby footage of the National Rifle Association’s building in Fairfax, Virginia. 

Murphy asserts that “they know their guns are killing our kids, but they don’t care” before declaring her support for “universal background checks”, “ending immunity for gun makers”, and “banning military-style assault weapons once and for all”. 

Now, a New Jersey politician going after the NRA and the millions of gun owners who are members is nothing new, but it’s odd that Murphy chose to make the organization the target of her first campaign ad given that the group is already in pretty rough shape at the moment. Heck, gun control groups have (falsely) declared that the group is dead in the water after a jury in a civil trial in New York determined that top officials like Wayne LaPierre should repay millions of dollars to the organization. The anti-gunners have already started to make the National Shooting Sports Foundation their newest bogeyman, so even from a gun control standpoint Murphy’s line of attack is dated and stale, just like the gun laws she says she’ll put in place if elected to the Senate. 

It’s also strange that Murphy never once mentions New Jersey in her first ad. Maybe that’s because recent polling shows that gun control was the top issue for just two percent of voters, far behind the economy and taxes, or maybe it’s just because so far Murphy’s running a generic campaign that’s failed to gain traction among New Jersey Democrats. Though she was expected to be the front-runner in the Democratic primary thanks to her husband’s position and political power, she’s trailed Democratic congressman Andy Kim (who’s just as anti-gun, unfortunately) in every public poll since she announced her candidacy. The most recent poll of New Jersey Democrats, released in late January, saw Kim with a 12-point lead over Murphy, and her campaign manager was apparently pushed out just a couple of days ago in what her campaign spokesperson described as a “transition.”

I don’t know if Murphy was the one who came up with the idea for her first ad or whether it was the now-departed Max Glass who thought the best way to introduce her to voters was an angry diatribe about the NRA, but I don’t think this is going to move many voters in her direction. Maybe she’s angling for the endorsement of Moms Demand Action and Everytown by going after the NRA in her first pitch to voters? That’s a possibility, though I don’t think we can discount the theory that she’s not any better at running a campaign than she is at coming up with policies that would actually make New Jersey residents safer.

Just like her husband, Murphy would rather blame legal gun owners and Second Amendment advocates for crime instead of pointing the finger at the perpetrators of gang and drug violence, home invasions, and armed robberies. She doesn’t even bother to trot out the usual Democratic talking point of “I support the Second Amendment, but…” 

In declaring war against the NRA, she’s also declaring her contempt for those New Jersey residents who dare to exercise their right to keep and bear arms. Those gun owners don’t have a pro-2A candidate to choose from in the Democratic primary, but they should still be paying attention to what Murphy is saying she’ll do to them if manages to turn around her floundering campaign. Her talking points may be stale, but that doesn’t mean they’re insincere. 

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  1. Mentally deranged just like her husband!
    NJ, hope yall see that Blue is destroying your state and our country! Vote Red!!!! Your lives will depend on it!!

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