NJ Gov Vows To Veto Marriage Equality Bill

Jim Burroway

January 24th, 2012

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie today said that he would veto any marriage quality bill reaching his desk. The bill, which passed the Senate Judiciary Committee today in an 8-4 vote, was identified as a top priority for state Democratic lawmakers. Christie instead urged lawmakers to pass a bill calling for a state referendum on marriage, saying “The institution of marriage if too serious to be treated like a political football.” Given that there are whispers that Christie is on the short list for the GOP vice presidential nomination, this is one issue he clearly wants to keep as far away from his desk as possible.

Christie also called for a strengthening legal protections under the state’s separate and unequal civil union law, specifically on questions of hospital visitation. Federal medicare regulations have already trumped state laws when it comes to visitation rights.

Mark F.

January 24th, 2012

No surprise.

The legislature should pass the marriage bill, have Christie veto it, and then go for a “seperate but sort of equal” “civil unions” law.

Jim Burroway

January 24th, 2012

New Jersey already has a separate but not equal civil unions law.

Lucrece

January 24th, 2012

He’s always been a douchebag, and I called it earlier.

He’s trying to pretend to be reasonable when his solution amounts to “Do we straight people want to consider gay people our equals?”

As if a ballot vote on a presidential election where a Republican base is particularly energized to dethrone a Democratic president is a fair representation of the “voice of the people”.

As if the “voice of the people” ever amounted to a pathetic 64% voter turn-out for the last election.

Stefan

January 24th, 2012

Thankfully those in the Senate will have nothing of it and pass the bill regardless.

Ryan

January 24th, 2012

He would never be President as a Republican if he signed that bill. Only virulently anti-gay candidates would ever make it through a Republican primary. The weird part is why he bothered playing coy to begin with. Oh, well. Hopefully Washington will pass without problems, at least.

JohnAGJ

January 24th, 2012

How would having a referendum be any less of making this a “political football” than the legislature voting on it? Seems to me with money pouring in on both sides even more in a referendum than in pressuring legislators the political donny-brook would be more intense with the former rather than the latter.

Pogovio

January 24th, 2012

Christie is not a terrible guy, he’s an old style Republican, before all the litmus tests were instituted. I think he is banking on a solid Republican defeat, in hopes that the current radical hate mongering Republican establishment is discredited. If that happens, there’s an opening for him to jump in in 2016. In the current environment, the Republican base would turn against him as soon as they find out about his moderate beliefs.

He can forget about a national career as long as the Tea Party tail is wagging the Republican dog.

Mark F.

January 24th, 2012

“New Jersey already has a separate but not equal civil unions law.”

But it could be improved, correct?

Tone

January 24th, 2012

Human rights are too important to be subjected to tyranny of the majority. The governor is being cowardly.

customartist

January 25th, 2012

Chris Christie KNOWS he is doing that which is Wrong, and for Political motives. He is not representing the will of the People.

The LARGER question is:
Will the New Jersey GOP Congress go along with him by passing a Referrendum, and against the Will of the Citizenry? [52% For v/s 42 % Against] It’s pretty clear.

Chris has confirmed that he will veto it – so go ahead! and let his chips fall where they may.

Charles

January 25th, 2012

Christie is punting on the issue. That is what politician are doing when they call for one. I think we all know that this issue is going to the United States Supreme Court.

Timothy Kincaid

January 25th, 2012

I’m not inclined to beat up on Christie. I do think his position is far far better than that of most other Governors, including some Democrats. In fact, it is better that that of the President – in that Christie isn’t just “supportive” of civil unions but actually called for a bill strengthening any inequalities.

In response to the fact that civil unions are in reality not equal to marriage, his response is “well let’s make them equal.” At this point I don’t think that is possible – history suggests otherwise. But I don’t think his response is any indication of ill will.

Christie isn’t homophobic or cowardly or full of bigotry or hatred. He simply is a victim of prejudice. Clearly he likes and respects gay people enough to put the first gay person on the NJ Supreme Court. Clearly he is sufficiently immune to anti-gay wackos that he confidently discusses why civil unions are needed in interviews.

But he hasn’t awakened to the reality that he still believes somewhere on a deep level that it is somehow preferable to be straight.

Prejudice is not an indication of evil. It is usually a holdover from early upbringing and often not even conscious. And it often harms those with it more than anyone.

Christie has no desire to harm the gay people he knows. But prejudice sits on his shoulder and says, “Civil unions are good enough. It will solve all the problems those gay folk have and isn’t that nice of you.” And prejudice carefully covers over the fact that there is inherent inequality when dividing citizens in any way so that Christie probably has no conscious awareness that this act, in and of itself, continues a pattern of institutionalized disrespect.

I’m sad that it pushed a “yeah, but” into Christie’s thinking on this issue. But I know that there is hope with those who operate from prejudice.

There still is time. What Chris Christie needs is a Jerry Sanders moment. He needs to sit and look in the eyes of people he knows and loves and see how this veto will hurt them.

Now is the time to Christie’s friends to take a stand. They have to let him know that they DO NOT “understand his position” or “know that he’s a man of faith” or any of the other “my gay friends” comments we hear. They need to tell him, “Chris, you know me, you’ve been my friend for decades. When you veto this bill, you are telling me that I am inferior. I know you don’t really believe that. I know you respect me. But your action in vetoing marriage demeans me.”

It’s time to make it personal.

Ryan

January 25th, 2012

I agree that it doesn’t appear that Christie has any particular animosity towards gay people, but no amount of making it “personal” will outweigh Christie’s personal desire to become President someday. This would be impossible if he personally signs this bill. I’m not sure why you claim that Christie is more progressive than Obama on this issue. Obama also supports Civil Unions. I don’t know if Christie supports the repeal of DOMA like Obama does, or if, as President, he would defend DOMA in court, but again, he could not support repeal and still win a GOP nomination, so it’s reasonable to assume he does not.

Reed Boyer

January 25th, 2012

Christie a victim? Hmmm. I’m inclined to agree. Of irrational fear, insecurity, etc. And it would seem clear that, when not bellowing, he uses his size to keep others at a distance. And, I’d think, stuffs the feelings with food.
Or possibly he’s simply gluttonous – and doesn’t want to share his special privileges with “those others.”

Iamposterity

January 25th, 2012

We should start an online game called Smell the Excrement!

Here are the rules:
When you see moral legislation, point to the Catholic Sacrament it is connected to.

FYI since I own all the rights and privilages I can change the rules to make sure I always win and everyone else always looses.

Oh I’m sorry Benedict did I steal your tactic! Here let me make it better by doing absolutely nothing to rectify my mistake…

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