New Jersey governor reacts to rise in COVID-19 cases

Gov. Phil Murphy tells "GMA" how his state was able to trend downward in COVID-19 cases and whether he's worried the rise in other states threatens that trend.
3:38 | 07/14/20

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Transcript for New Jersey governor reacts to rise in COVID-19 cases
Connecticut and New Jersey teaming up with New York for that quarantine order affecting 19 states and joining us now is the governor of New Jersey, Phil Murphy. Governor, thanks for being with us. We heard gio outline Andrew Cuomo's new order. Is New Jersey considering a similar order to put in place for travelers coming in from those hot spots? Good to be with you. We'll do it our own way but we're deadly serious about this. This is a travel advisory demanding 14-day self-quarantining testing for many hot spot states. Right now there are 19 states in the country that meet that criteria. We knew when we opened our state up we would take on more risk of transmission of the virus but added element from folks coming from hot spots. Speaking to that New Jersey numbers looking pretty good but how concerned are you about those numbers changing or it being affixed by these other states seeing surges? Very concerned. I mean, we've lived through hell and lost over 13,000 confirmed fatalities to covid-19 in our state over 15,000 if you include probable deaths. We don't want to have to go through that again so we're very concerned. Again, if we could control everything within our four walls that would be one thing but we are the United States of America and we have to look with very -- with great concern on the surges elsewhere. Within the state of new Jersey, you and I both know you have very beautiful beach, very popular beaches and we've seen the images coming out of the Jersey shore, people not social distancing or wearing masks and you've expressed concern. How are you addressing this? You know, we've worked with the shore counties and municipalities and it's worked well and laid out the broad program territories and they've executed it so it depends on the town. We all know the virus is a lot less lethaloutoutside than inside but we can't let our hair down completely and work with the local authorities and do have the Jersey shores, an American jewel and a lot of folks there not traveling elsewhere so the demand is higher than probably ever before and we got to keep on top of it. Governor Murphy, you know los Angeles, San Diego, both deciding not to re-open schools to just do them virtually in the fall. Where are you in New Jersey on the opening, re-opening of schools? Yeah, we still hope to be back to school but we've got to do it responsibly and right. Our department of education put out parameters about three weeks ago. We're then asking our districts to come up with their back to school plan because no two districts are the same but we're watching that very closely. The biggest concern is the passing of the virus from an asymptomatic healthy young person to an older educator, administrator, swung with underlying health issues and that's the thing we got to watch the most. Governor Murphy, you mentioned you had demonstrators outside of your home over the weekend chanting, "Burn your mask." What do you say to people who are frustrated with the policies in place in your state? Listen, I mean, everyone has a right to protest but we have to make the decisions based on science, the data, on facts, social distancing, wearing face coverings, washing your hands with soap and water. Staying home if you don't feel well. That's all we've got. We don't have the therapeutic yet or that vaccine yet so I would say to folks with all due respect I don't like wearing a mask either but it's the smart thing to do. Thank you for your final. We appreciate it today. Thanks for having me.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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