Saturday, February 18, 2012

In Which Chris Christie Steps In It

The New Jersey legislature passed a bill that allowed gay marriage. Chris Christie, a Republican, vetoed it immediately. That was totally expected. Chris Christie belongs to the Republican party. Republicans use the political process to marginalize gay people in any way they can. Chris Christie hopes for a long, happy career in the Republican party.

Which means there was no way he was going to sign the bill. Of course, in his statement, he couldn't just admit that. "Hey, I'm a Republican. I can't sign a gay marriage bill. It will end my political career. Why'd you guys do that to me? Don't you know I want to run for president someday?"

Nope, he has to resort to specious arguments:
I am adhering to what I've said since this bill was first introduced – an issue of this magnitude and importance, which requires a constitutional amendment, should be left to the people of New Jersey to decide.
An issue of this magnitude and importance? Now maybe my priorities are out of order, but tweaking the rules of legal coupling to include homosexual relationships doesn't strike me as being of large magnitude nor tremendous importance. Not to belittle Adam and Steve's big day...but really, who gives a shit?

Who are the voters of New Jersey to say no? And that's clearly what Christie is hoping will happen. After all, if he thought the bill accurately reflected the voters' views, why not just sign the damn thing and be done with it?

Much better for the ambitious Republican to kick it to voters, who love them some specious arguments, and hope they buy that "magnitude" bullshit.

For what it's worth, Christie doesn't seem intent on dogging on gays. His statement included this bit of niceness:
"I have been just as adamant that same-sex couples in a civil union deserve the very same rights and benefits enjoyed by married couples – as well as the strict enforcement of those rights and benefits," the statement continued. "Discrimination should not be tolerated and any complaint alleging a violation of a citizen's right should be investigated and, if appropriate, remedied. To that end, I include in my conditional veto the creation of a strong Ombudsman for Civil Unions to carry on New Jersey's strong tradition of tolerance and fairness."
You got that? "Same-sex couples...deserve the very same rights and benefits enjoyed by married couples," except.....the right to call their "civil union" a marriage.

Now that's some hair-splitting...

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