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NYTimes editorial board nails it again in support of marriage equality in New Jersey

Marriage equality

By Adam Bink

Great NYTimes editorial in favor of marriage equality in New Jersey:

Gov. Chris Christie’s announcement last week that he would veto a measure to legalize same-sex marriage in New Jersey is maddening, but sadly predictable. He vowed to block marriage equality when he ran for office in 2009 and is now calling for a statewide referendum.

Supporters of marriage equality in the State Legislature need to press on. To turn what is a matter of civil rights over to voters would be an abdication of lawmakers’ duty. It would also be a sharp break with New Jersey tradition. The last time the state held a referendum on civil rights was 1915, when a majority voted “no” on granting women the right to vote.

It appears there are enough votes in the Democratic-controlled Legislature to approve marriage equality, and legislative leaders should seize the moment. Just getting the measure to Mr. Christie’s desk would be an important milestone. It would add momentum to the cause of equal rights beyond New Jersey’s borders.

Rounding up sufficient Republican votes for a veto override would be hard but not impossible. Under New Jersey law, the Legislature would have until January 2014, when the current two-year legislative session ends, to undo the governor’s action with a two-thirds vote in both the Senate and Assembly.

Instead of blocking justice for gay people, some governors are actually leading the way. Gov. Andrew Cuomo set an inspiring example last year with his successful fight to allow same-sex couples to marry in New York. Now, Gov. Martin O’Malley of Maryland and Gov. Christine Gregoire of Washington, both Democrats, are leading the drive for marriage equality in their states. New Jersey’s lawmakers will have to achieve that goal on their own.

6 Comments

  • 1. Sagesse  |  January 30, 2012 at 8:31 am

    @

  • 2. grod  |  January 30, 2012 at 10:46 am

    Sagesse and Ann S
    And Adam
    I'm hard pressed to come here and see not comments but three enteries and two favourable acknowledgements. I'm not sure the purpose.

  • 3. Koyomi  |  January 30, 2012 at 11:58 am

    @grod

    I think comment posts that contain a single character are used to subscribe to the comment thread, so that the poster will recieve email notifications of subsequent comments.

  • 4. frisky1  |  January 30, 2012 at 12:13 pm

    NJ Gov Christie calls an openly gay Assemblyman "numbnuts" and suggests that the press should “take a bat out” on Sen. Loretta Weinberg (D-Bergen County) because of what he considers the Dems overreacting to his idiotic statements about voting on civil rights in the 60s last week. He then followed with this gem:

    “The political climate in the South didn’t give them the option to have a referendum back then,” he said, adding later: “They wished they would have had the option, but the political climate did not permit it, meaning they would not win.”

    So it sounds like he is suggesting that black people should have waited until the majority were comfortable enough with them to vote for their civil rights. I wonder in how many states, it would still be acceptable to deny housing, accommodation, jobs, marriage, etc. based on race.
    http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2012/01/gov_chri

  • 5. Drpatrick1  |  January 30, 2012 at 12:32 pm

    Assuming the best in people…. I think what Christie is saying is that black people in the 50's and 60's only wish their political plight was on par with where gay people are today. That is to say, they would gladly exchange the firehoses, bully clubs, and torches for the political battles being waged today in courthouses, legislative bodies and the like. I think his statement misses the point. Black people deserved equality then no matter how the fight happened. It is progress in this country that police are not used to threaten and beat up the populice (though I suspect we have a few transgendered folks reading this who might argue this persists). But that does not mean we have progressed to the point where minorities are not vulnerable to the tyranny of the majority. A classic example…a fat governor who promises to veto access to a fundamental right from a vulnerable minority. Just a hypothetical example of course!

    Bottom line, if the gov wants it, our opponents demand the legislature vote. When the leg wants it, they want the courts to have their say. When the courts want it, they want the people to vote. When the people want it, they want a constitutional amendment. They hate, they refuse to accept progress, they r the definition of bigot!

  • 6. Prop 8 Trial Tracker &raq&hellip  |  January 31, 2012 at 1:01 pm

    […] words with reporters in response to criticisms of his call to put marriage equality up for a referendum, he also shared some interesting news about Bruce Harris, the openly gay man he has nominated to […]

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