TRENTON, N.J. – A bill that would eliminate mandatory minimum sentences for non-violent crimes was passed with only Democrat support because it included ending definite punishment for corrupt elected officials. The inclusion of public corruption, termed official misconduct, was made by a state senator whose girlfriend’s son faces current mandatory charges.
Assemblyman John DiMaio’s amendment to take any reference to official misconduct out of the bill was jettisoned by Democrats.
“I think many of us are aware of the social justice issues that would be addressed by this bill,” DiMaio (R-Warren) said during today’s voting session. “But I just do not understand where the social justice issue comes in with elected people, or public officials, who should be held to a higher standard.”
DiMaio also noted that Governor Phil Murphy and Attorney General Gurbir Grewal have voiced opposition to the bill with the inclusion of exempting official misconduct from mandatory minimums.