Thursday, December 14, 2006

NJ Civil Union Backstory

An hour after the New Jersey legislature passed a civil union bill, the New York Times adds some color. It notes that many people from various sides are unhappy.

Garden State Equality pledges to push for full marriage. Anti-SSM forces in the legislature fought this bill. Senate Republicans tried to amend the civil-union bill to define marriage as between a man and a woman. Because they failed, expanding into marriage is possible without first repealing any laws.

Homosexual-rights activists in the Assembly gallery cheered at the vote. The Times also reports that they "applauded a statement in the nearly hourlong floor debate by Assemblyman Reed Gusciora, a Princeton Democrat, that 'the distance between nothing and civil unions is greater than the distance between civil unions and marriage.'"

This sprint to satisfy the state high-court requirement stopped repeatedly to kick around the word marriage. SSM advocated failed to get it applied to all paired unions. However, "(s)ame-sex marriage supporters in the Legislature conceded that they could not have pushed through a full marriage bill by the Supreme Court’s deadline in late April."

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1 comment:

Uncle said...

It will happen, of course. Two parts of that bother me. First, that I may well not live to see it. Second (showing my New England) that Jersey might get there first (evil grins).

I'll indulge a prediction. When he change happens, it may well happen as a Supreme Court in spite of itself is driven to uphold the American legal religion, based on the sanctity of contract, over the American spiritual religion, based in this case on a particular sort of negative hate.