New Jersey Governor Chris Christie
Following last week’s temporary court victory for gay marriage, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie has decided to end his legal battle against marriage equality.
On Friday, the New Jersey Supreme Court rejected Christie’s request to suspend a lower court’s ruling that civil marriage licenses be granted to same-sex couples in the state from Monday, October 21st.
The court, however, did not look at the full merits of his appeal against the earlier ruling and planned to fully review the matter in January.
As gay and lesbian couples in the meantime began to marry in New Jersey, Christie admitted defeat and instructed his Attorney General to withdraw the state’s appeal against the earlier court decision.
In a statement, Christie’s office said that it did not believe that it could win the case after the state’s Supreme Court said that “same-sex couples who cannot marry are not treated equally under the law”.
The move now makes New Jersey the 14th state in the US where lesbian and gay couples can marry.
“Governor Christie did the right thing in not standing in the way of loving couples’ ability to make lifelong commitments to each other through marriage,” commented Human Rights Campaign (HRC) president Chad Griffin.
“Breaking down this dark wall of discrimination in New Jersey helps build momentum as we continue to expand the marriage equality map so that one day soon a state border will not dictate whether a loving couple can share in the joys of marriage.”