Thursday, December 14, 2006
The New Jersey Legislature voted this evening to allow civil unions between same-sex couples. According to the New York Times article, Gov. Jon S. Corzine, who has supported civil unions, he would give the measure careful review but added, “I think we’re doing the right thing.” The Assembly approved the bill in a 56-to-19 vote; the Senate vote was 23-to-12. New Jersey would be the third state, after Vermont and Connecticut, to establish civil unions for gay and lesbian couples. Same-sex marriages are allowed only in Massachusetts, which has a residency requirement, although many gays and lesbians have married in Canada.
The legislation comes after the New Jersey Supreme Court decision of seven weeks ago (See October 26 Family Law Prof Blog posting) which required that the gay couples be given access to the same rights and benefits as married couples.