Citing NY Progress, New Jersey Lawmaker Proposes Gay Marriage Bill

New Jersey state Democratic assemblyman Reed Gusciora told reporters this week, “They’re talking about it in New York, why aren’t we talking about it in New Jersey?” in reference to his having introduced a marriage equality bill Monday. But the forecast for the effort is, unfortunately, rather grim.


In New Jersey, it’s the first time a lawmaker has put forward a bill on gay marriage since it was defeated in the state Senate in January 2010 — just before Gov. Chris Christie took office.


State Sen. Loretta Weinberg (D-Bergen), who co-sponsored the Senate bill with Raymond Lesniak (D-Union) last year, said she will reintroduce it only if she can secure a veto-proof majority.

“If we can garner enough votes and we know they will stand up to the socially ultraconservative governor sitting in the Statehouse … then I’m willing to start all over again,” she said.

The difference between New York and New Jersey is, of course, the aforementioned “ultra-conservative” governor Chris Christie who has categorically opposed marriage equality in the past and this week reiterated his stance in a television interview.

From The Advocate:

“My religion says it’s a sin. But for me, I have always believed that people are born with the predisposition to be homosexual,” Christie told Piers Morgan on Tuesday night. “And so I think if someone is born that way it’s very difficult to say then that that’s a sin. I understand that my church says that. But for me personally, I don’t look upon someone who’s homosexual as a sinner.”


“I believe marriage is an institution between one man and one woman,” he said, repeating the mantra of equality opponents. “I think it’s special and unique in society, and I think we can have civil unions that can help to give the same type of legal rights to same-sex couples that marriage gives them. But I just think marriage has as a special connotation. And I couldn’t see myself changing my mind on that. But I am in favor of making sure that homosexual couples have the same type of legal rights that heterosexual couples have.”

Chris Christie there tying himself up in knots as to whether being gay is a sin and what that means for his belief in “special” marriage, a stance he seems to justify only through an appeal to heterosexual privilege, but I digress.

It is unlikely that under its current makeup the New Jersey Legislature would pass a gay marriage bill and even more unlikely that lawmakers could muster a veto proof majority in defense of marriage equality, but it is interesting to note the kind of knock-on effect elicited by the marriage equality fight in New York.

If successful, New York would be the sixth and largest state to legalize same-sex marriage through the legislative process. The bill is, at the time of writing, stalled in the Senate where the Republican leadership continues to dither on whether to bring the bill to the floor. It is widely believed that, with 31 votes in favor and more Republican votes in the offing, the bill would pass should the vote proceed.


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Photo used under the Creative Commons Atirubution License, with thanks to brainchildvn.


W. C
W. Cabout a year ago


William C
William Cabout a year ago

Thank you.

Janis Jones
janis keller6 years ago

I hope it passes. No more prejudism

Victoria M.
Past Member 6 years ago

is it a sin if you arent religious?

and according to whose god?

Alicia N.
Alicia N6 years ago

Gladly signed petition, good luck.

Winn Adams
Winn A6 years ago

All states should have same sex marriage.

Gary Stewart
Gary Stewart6 years ago

First to Angela Burrow, I AM an American and I also don't understand how we went from the America that was founded to the America which exists today. We ARE supposed to have religious freedom, yet some elements of our society have come to interpret that to mean the freedom to be "Christian". Even our pledge of allegience has been altered (two years AFTER my birth more or less) so while my country is older than I am my pledge of allegience is younger! I was born and raised in a Christian family yet I have friends who are not Christians and they are every much American citizens as those who are. Why they should be denied the same rights as all other Americans I do not understand.

I can assure you that some of us STILL believe in the America that our forefathers founded, one which does NOT impose a particular religion or even any religion on it's citizens!

It boggles my mind to see our troops fighting in several foreign wars, with one of the justifications sited being that their people deserve religious freedom and yet many of the same people who site that reason wish to impose their religious views on our own country to the extent of excluding those who do not follow the same.

I always believed that God was supposed to be the one who judged our lives. These days it seems there are a lot more Gods than there once were as many (not all, but many) Christians have usurped the roll.

Jessica K.
Jessica K6 years ago

Well said and agreed Charlene... Equal rights and protections for ALL is the only right thing to do. Progress marches on in NY and NJ, here's hoping both states pass marriage equality laws!

Charlene Rush
Charlene Rush6 years ago

To Sandra Eastman: You have the right to stick to anything you like and you don't have to approve of same-sex marriage.

However, there is nothing sacred about it.
It's original intent was about money and power. God had no place in it, until the 16th century, when the church got into the act.

We can assume you are a Catholic, in order for you to approve of this Catholic decision.

Charlene Rush
Charlene Rush6 years ago

The proponents of same-sex marriage, are on the winning side. It is inevitible, because it is the right thing to do. It's wonderful, when RIGHT, wins out, over Wrong.

America, no longer, leads the world in many issues. We have to look to Europe, to give us the courage of our convictions.
Our right-wing conservatives, would have us move backwards, as in the early centuries, when the church ruled much of the world. We fought long and hard to eradicate this type of existence. Control of the masses, is their goal, their money and their (lack of) welfare.

If that is the way you wish to live, you have my deepest concern, for you and me.