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New Jersey Governor Chris Christie has dropped his administration’s appeal to gay marriage, just as same sex couples began getting married across the state.
Christie’s decision is in contrast to his previous position that gay marriage is an issue to be decided by New Jersey’s voters. He had previously said that he was against a decision made by a New Jersey Superior court judge last month that ruled that the state was denying same sex couples their rights since the Supreme court struck down the Defense of Marriage Act. Earlier this month, the judge had dismissed Christie’s request for a delay.
“Although the governor strongly disagrees with the court substituting its judgment for the constitutional process of the elected branches or a vote of the people, the court has now spoken clearly as to their view of the New Jersey Constitution and, therefore, same-sex marriage is the law,” Christie’s administration said in a statement Monday, reports The New York Times.
The administration added that Christie will do his “constitutional duty and ensure his administration enforces the law as dictated by the New Jersey Supreme Court.”
According to USA Today, gay marriage officially became legal at midnight and several couples made sure that they were among the first to get married.
Councilwoman Amy Quinn and partner Heather Jensen were married in Asbury Park with another couple, Steven Brunner and Daniel Baum, in a joint ceremony. "I think it's wonderful,” the Rev. Thomas Pivinski, who officiated the two weddings, said. "I am just very grateful that the state has recognized the equality of all people."
New Jersey is now the 14th state to allow same-sex marriage.