EDITORIAL : Now that a same-sex marriage bill is all but dead, proponents are going to have to hope they can convince lawmakers to put the question on the election ballot.
Those opposed to the measure can thank, and those who favor it can blame, a trio of Democrats: Paul Sarlo, of Bergen County and John Girgenti of Passaic County, who, along with Ronald Rice of Essex, have all said whatever it is, they’re against it.
If the vote went straight down party lines, the Democrats would end up ahead by only 19-18 — two votes short of the total needed to approve the bill.
That renders meaningless the vote of the only Republican Senator who openly supports the Marriage Equality Act, William Baroni of Mercer County — who got the bill out of the Judiciary Committee on Monday after a seven-hour hearing.
The Assembly has a twin measure ready, but that would only come up if the Senate passes its version. They might as well stash it in a file.Jerry DeMarco (Publisher/Editor)
The clock was ticking, with supporter Gov. Jon Corzine about to leave office and opponent Christopher Christie about to replace him.
That didn’t sit well with a few Senators, who say Corzine was trying to slip this one through on his way out the door.
Cardinale has already expressed his feelings against the measure, but he also said he was offended that this would come up during a lame-duck session.
Given that Corzine lost to Christie, Cardinale asked, “Is he still empowered to make far-reaching culture-changing decisions for this society?”
“This was an issue that was raised in the campaign,” the senator said. “To allow this new culture-changing policy to take effect before the new governor is sworn in seems to me to be snubbing our nose at the people of this state and the way they voted.”
Come Friday, questions will be raised of possibly making it a ballot question in next fall’s statewide election. But that would be for the new Legislature to decide.
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