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It has become a daily ritual.

During his daily news briefing, Gov. Phil Murphy gives the new number of positive COVID-19 cases in New Jersey and how many people have officially died from the virus over the past 24 hours.

He then offers a range of messages designed to inspire and encourage Garden State residents to continue to stay at home and remain at least 6 feet apart and wear masks when they do venture outside.

Wednesday’s update was no exception, as Murphy pleaded with New Jerseyans to continue their efforts to slow the spread of the virus.

“This is a war. This is the fight of our lives and wars are not won by one person — they’re won when millions of people come together in a common cause.”

Murphy said the stay-at-home efforts have slowed the infection rate, which is crucial in ensuring there are enough ventilators for the seriously ill COVID-19 patients who need them.

“So far, so good. No state has come close to what we’ve done in New Jersey. We could all not be prouder of the work that everyone is doing.”

But he was quick to add: “We just have got to keep it up. Don’t take your foot off the gas, folks. Stay on this. This is no time to let up."

Murphy then said he understands everyone wants to get out of the house but right now that’s a no-go.

“I promise you, the second we think we can we will let you know. That, you have my word. But for now, stay home, stay 6 or more feet apart.”

Murphy said he continues to deliver these emotional messages because he wants to make sure he makes every effort possible so his worst fears don’t materialize.

“My nightmare scenario right now is that people get sloppy. They basically let their guard down.”

He said if this happens it would be horrible.

Murphy said if people get sloppy and don’t stay home the need for hospital beds in New Jersey could suddenly spike to 36,000, which would overwhelm our health care workers.

“If we drop our guard right now, there’s no amount of work that they can do. There’s no amount of help from other states, there’s no amount of help from the federal government that can allow us to stay above water in that circumstance.”


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