FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE | February 16, 2012
NCLR Responds to New Jersey Marriage Equality Vote
Statement by NCLR Executive Director Kate Kendell
(San Francisco, CA, February 16, 2012)—Today, the New Jersey State Assembly passed a bill establishing full marriage rights for same-sex couples. The New Jersey State Senate passed a companion bill on February 13, 2012. If Gov. Chris Christie signs the bill into law, New Jersey will become the 11th jurisdiction in the country in which same-sex couples can marry.
If the bill is signed, New Jersey will join seven other states, Washington D.C., and two tribal nations that no longer discriminate against same-sex couples in marriage.
Gov. Christie has publicly stated that he plans to veto the bill, and that the issue should be decided by state-wide referendum, but he has faced serious criticism for this position.
Statement by NCLR Executive Director Kate Kendell, Esq.:
"It is a testament to the hard work of our New Jersey friends and the arc of justice that the New Jersey legislature has passed a marriage bill. Governor Chris Christie has said he will veto the bill, suggesting that the voters should decide the civil rights of their neighbors. This position is a thinly veiled dodge of his responsibilities as governor. We urge Gov. Christie to demonstrate the courage his office demands and sign the bill that the elected representatives of the people of New Jersey support. By doing so he will strengthen the families, culture, and future of his state."
The National Center for Lesbian Rights is a national legal organization committed to advancing the civil and human rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people and their families through litigation, public policy advocacy, and public education.