"VIDEO: Marriage Equality Arrives In New Jersey!"
CREDIT: Rich Schultz/Associated Press.
Per Friday’s ruling by the New Jersey Supreme Court, marriage equality arrived in The Garden State Monday morning at 12:01 AM and same-sex couples were there to greet it. Here are some highlights from this morning’s celebrations:
Newark, New Jersey
Newark Mayor and Senator-elect Cory Booker (D) happily presided over several marriages just after midnight. Booker had previously refused to officiate any weddings in his capacity as mayor until same-sex couples were allowed to marry as well. He married seven same-sex couples as well as two opposite-sex couples in a ceremony at City Hall.
During the first wedding, a heckler interrupted the ceremony to proclaim, “This is unlawful in the name of God.” Booker asked that he be escorted out, then proceeded, adding, “I do not hear any substantive worthy objections.” Watch a clip of Booker marrying Orville Bell and Joseph Panessidi (updated to a clip including the heckler):
Lambertville, New Jersey
Lambertville Mayor David DelVecchio presided over the wedding of Beth Asaro and Joanne Schailey, who had also been the first couple to obtain a civil union in New Jersey. Schailey compared the moment to “winning the Super Bowl.” Watch the ceremony:
Elizabeth, New Jersey
Louise Walpin and Marsha Shapiro are one of the couples that joined the lawsuit challenging New Jersey’s ban on same-sex marriage. They married at the home of state Sen. Raymond Lesniak (D), who co-sponsored the marriage equality bill the legislature passed but Gov. Chris Christie (R) vetoed. Walpin and Shapiro raised four children and are eagerly awaiting their second grandchild. Watch a clip featuring the happy couple here.
Asbury Park, New Jersey
Three same-sex couples also married just after midnight at the Paramount Theatre on the boardwalk of Asbury Park. Retired Catholic priest Tom Pivinski officiated. Watch a clip here (warning: autoplay).
New Jersey is officially the 14th state to offer marriage equality state-wide, in addition to the District of Columbia and some New Mexico counties. The state Supreme Court still has to hear the case and issue a final rule on the legality of same-sex marriage, but by allowing these marriages to proceed in the meantime, they have indicated their likelihood of doing so.