Opponents To New Jersey Gay Marriage Ruling Hope To Keep Marriage Traditional
Governor Chris Christie will appeal Friday's ruling by a state a judge allowing gay marriage in New Jersey as opponents hope to keep marriage traditional in New Jersey.
“Governor Christie has always maintained that he would abide by the will of the voters on the issue of marriage equality and called for it to be on the ballot this Election Day," said Christie's press secretary Michael Drewniak. "Since the legislature refused to allow the people to decide expeditiously, we will let the Supreme Court make this constitutional determination.”
In a 53 page summary judgment issued Friday, Judge Mary Jacobson, the top judge in Mercer County, says in an emergency ruling that because the federal government recognizes gay marriages, not doing so in New Jersey would violate the state constitution.
Republican US Senate candidate Steve Lonegan said in a statement, "The issue is an activist judge who is legislating from the bench, using her judicial power to advance her own agenda" He shares the belief that the decision should be made by either a ballot question or by the legislature.
John Tomicki, president of the New Jersey Coalition To Preserve and Protect Marriage says this decision would never have been possible if it wasn't for a 2006 supreme court decision. “The state of New Jersey at that time did not clearly delineate nor raise the issue of why natural marriage is important to a cultural and society and his different from a civil union.”
Marriage should be kept to "one man and one woman," Tomicki told the Star Ledger and believes that the ruling puts "freedom of religion and freedom of conscience at great risk."
Len Deo, president of the New Jersey Family Policy Council, criticized the ruling. "For our state, essentially, this is judicial activism again, one judge implementing same-sex marriage on New Jersey," he said.
Jacobson in her ruling also concluded that New Jersey's stand "is currently harming same-sex couples in New Jersey in a wide range of contexts" including the ability to receive certain federal benefits.
The judge's order says marriages can begin on October 21. The Christie Administration, which has favored the issue being put to a ballot vote, is expected to appeal the decision. The appeal would be to an intermediate court and then the state Supreme Court.