Gay Marriage and New Jersey

You likely heard the Republicans claim huge wins in the November gubernatorial elections, because Republican candidates beat Democratic candidates in two states – Virginia and New Jersey. In New Jersey, the big Republican win is leading to some really interesting politics.

You see, despite electing a Republican governor, New Jersey (or at least some parts of it, probably the ones closest to New York*) wants to get gay marriage legislation passed and outgoing governor Jon Corzine wants to sign it. But Jon Corzine is unemployed come January 19, 2010 and will be replaced by a fat Republican**, who also happens to dislike same-sex marriage***. It is now December 15, politicians are looking forward to their notoriously long holiday vacations, except in New Jersey, where there is a mad scramble to get same-sex marriage legislation on Jon Corzine’s desk pronto, like by 11:59am January 19 at the absolute latest (It takes less than a minute to sign your name right?). The vote was suspended last week, because “The public needs another opportunity to engage legislators on this issue,” said state Senator Loretta Weinberg, a sponsor, in a statement. It should be interesting to watch this play out. I just hope we see some action on it in January, rather than it dying here.

Some opponents are arguing that gay marriage should be put to the voters, who have defeated every gay marriage bill presented to them (31 in total according to that article). While it would be nice, in a democracy such as ours, to – you know – let voters make decisions, there are a couple areas in which we really cannot trust voters to act in the best interest of the nation. This is a time when the courts (see: Iowa) need to step it up and make this country just. I mean, would you really have trusted Mississippi voters to enact civil rights legislation?

*Just kidding. New York doesn’t want anything to do with gay marriage.
**I don’t write the rhetoric, I just spout it.
*** He’s not the worst of the worst in term of this policy, since he does support civil unions.

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About Sylvia Fredericks

Second-Year MPA student at the La Follette School for Public Affairs (University of Wisconsin - Madison)
This entry was posted in Civil Rights, Gay Rights, National, News, Politics and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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