As expected, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s (R) administration is appealing a ruling by a state judge last week that it is unconstitutional not to offer marriage to same-sex couples. Rather than simply requesting an appellate court consider it, Acting Attorney General John Hoffman wrote to the state Supreme Court, asking them to take up the case directly.
According to Hoffman’s letter, the case has “far-reaching implications,” but it’s unclear what those are beyond simply allowing same-sex couples to marry. He is seeking a stay from Judge Mary Jacobson, who wrote last week’s marriage equality ruling, and if she does not stay it, he will seek a stay from an appellate court or the Supreme Court. According to Jacobson’s opinion though, same-sex marriage would become legal in the state on October 21. If her decision is stayed, New Jersey same-sex couples will continue to not have access to federal marriage benefits.
Christie, for his sake, has maintained that he opposes marriage equality and insists that the only way it should ever be allowed to become law is through a public referendum. Meanwhile, the legislature is still considering overturning his veto of same-sex marriage legislation, which lawmakers would have to accomplish before January.