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Covering Hamilton and Robbinsville townships in-depth for The Trentonian. I can be reached at (609) 989-7800 ext. 207 or (609) 468-6962. Email me at or follow me @awisefool.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

NJ activists, pols celebrate DOMA ruling, contemplate next steps

A legal wrinkle has shown up in New Jersey amid celebration and consternation at the Supreme Court’s overturning of the Defense of Marriage Act.
Aside from the immediate reactions to the landmark 5-4 Supreme Court decision, activists are already talking about the next steps for the issue in the Garden State. The recognition of same-sex marriage for states that already have it also presents a pickle for married couples living in New Jersey, according to several proponents.
The Supreme Court ruled Wednesday that the federal Defense of Marriage Act, which prohibited the recognition of same sex marriage by the federal government, was unconstitutional. It allows more than 1,000 federal rights, responsibilities and guarantees to go to same-sex couples who are married in the 12 states — now 13 with the court’s ruling on California’s Proposition 8 — that allow same sex marriage.
Rep. Reed Gusciora (D-Mercer) said the ruling was a step forward for the movement to give same sex couples the same rights as heterosexual ones. Gusciora led the push for last year’s bill that would have made same-sex marriage legal in New Jersey, which Gov. Chris Christie vetoed.
“It’s great for the 13 states now including marriage equality in their laws,” he said. “But it really doesn’t give anything for New Jersey. It’s certainly a starting point for public debate, but unless the legislature, the courts or the governor act, things won’t change.”
You can read the full story here.


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