(News Agencies)Gov.-elect Phil Murphy on Tuesday announced the Bergen County prosecutor as his nominee for state attorney general and vowed that his pick will lead the fight against the Trump administration on issues ranging from health care to voting rights and the environment.Gurbir S. Grewal, an Indian-American Sikh, is Murphy’s first high-level nomination — and a historic one — as the Democrat works to fill out an administration set to take office on Jan. 16. If Grewal is confirmed by the state Senate, which seems all but certain, Murphy said he would become the first South Asian attorney general in New Jersey and the first Sikh to hold the position in any state.
“The American dream is alive and well in New Jersey,” Grewal said at a news conference in Trenton where Murphy made the announcement. Attorney general is one of the most powerful positions in New Jersey government, serving as the state’s top cop and top lawyer. The person in that role leads the 7,200-employee Department of Law and Public Safety, which includes the state police, civil rights enforcement, consumer affairs and civil litigation.
Murphy has stressed on multiple occasions since his November election, and repeated Tuesday, that he wants his attorney general to band together with attorneys general from other states to sue to block policies coming out of a Republican-controlled Washington, D.C.
“In light of all that is being thrown at us by the president, we need an attorney general unafraid to join our fellow states in using the law to protect all New Jersey residents.” Murphy said. “Whether it is seeking to protect our immigrant communities and ‘Dreamers’ from discrimination, fighting to protect the Affordable Care Act from being undermined, keeping sensitive data away from people bent on suppressing voting rights, standing up for our LGBT community, or protecting our air and water from a hostile EPA, to name just a few, Gurbir will do just that.”
Asked about those expectations Tuesday, Grewal, a Democrat, said it was “too early to give you specific litigation priorities.”