New Jersey's Supreme Court ruled Wednesday that same-sex couples are entitled to the same rights as heterosexual couples.
But the court left it to the Legislature to determine whether the state will honor gay marriage or some other form of civil union.
Advocates on both sides of the issue believed the state posed the best chance for gay marriage to win approval since Massachusetts became the only state to do so in 2003 because the New Jersey Supreme Court has a history of extending civil rights protections.
Instead, the high court stopped short of fully approving gay marriage and gave lawmakers 180 days to rewrite marriage laws to either include gay couples or create new civil unions. (AP)
This is the right ruling, I think. It strikes a balance that a lot of people will be able to live with.
But. It's October. It's late October, and everything is political. Is this what the national Republican Party, reeling from scandal, Iraq and the misfortunes of an unpopular president, has been looking for?
The ramifications, if there are any, won't be strongly felt here in Connecticut. We have civil unions already, and only the extremists at the Family Institute seem to care. But what about in Virginia? What about Montana, or Idaho? Will a mild ruling in New Jersey help light a fire under disenchanted evangelical voters?
"New Jersey court recognizes right to same-sex unions." Associated Press 25 October, 2006.