Marriage Equality Whip Count?

Hey all, first diary. I managed to make it to the first Trenton lobby day and had an amazing time. Thanks to all the Garden State Equality staff and volunteers for making such an awesome event happen (and hopefully happen again a few more times!).

I have been looking around for a Senate whip count to see where we stand and can’t find one. I called my senator, Jeff Van Drew, and his receptionist told me he wasn’t going to vote for a bill. 🙁 One down. Anyone out there with an updated list of confirmed or expected yes and no votes? I’m going to do some asking around and can update this diary with any new information posted here or messaged to me. Here are all of our state senators:

* District 1: Jeff Van Drew (D) – NO

* District 2: Jim Whelan (D)

* District 3: Stephen M. Sweeney (D)

* District 4: Fred H. Madden (D)

* District 5: Dana Redd (D)

* District 6: James Beach (D)

* District 7: Diane Allen (R)

* District 8: Phil Haines (R)

* District 9: Christopher J. Connors (R)

* District 10: Andrew R. Ciesla (R)

* District 11: Sean T. Kean (R) – NO (ref)

* District 12: Jennifer Beck (R)

* District 13: Joseph M. Kyrillos (R)

* District 14: Bill Baroni (R)

* District 15: Shirley Turner (D)

* District 16: Christopher Bateman (R) – NO (ref)

* District 17: Bob Smith (D)

* District 18: Barbara Buono (D) – YES (ref)

* District 19: Joseph Vitale (D)

* District 20: Raymond Lesniak (D) – YES (ref)

* District 21: Thomas Kean, Jr. (R)

* District 22: Nicholas Scutari (D)

* District 23: Michael J. Doherty (R) – NO (ref)

* District 24: Steve Oroho (R) – NO (ref)

* District 25: Anthony Bucco (R)

* District 26: Joseph Pennacchio (R)

* District 27: Richard Codey (D) – YES (ref)

* District 28: Ronald Rice (D)

* District 29: Teresa Ruiz (D) – YES (ref)

* District 30: Robert Singer (R) – NO (ref)

* District 31: Sandra Bolden Cunningham (D) – YES (ref)

* District 32: Nicholas Sacco (D)

* District 33: Brian P. Stack (D)

* District 34: Nia Gill (D) – YES (ref)

* District 35: John Girgenti (D)

* District 36: Paul Sarlo (D)

* District 37: Loretta Weinberg (D) – YES (ref)

* District 38: Robert M. Gordon (D)

* District 39: Gerald Cardinale (R) – NO (ref)

* District 40: Kevin J. O’Toole (R)

To say that things are tight is an understatement. It has been widely reported that Jennifer Beck and Bill Baroni are still on the fence; if we lose one or both of them, the margin is very slim within the Democratic caucus. Sarlo sounds like a no, which would leave anywhere between two and zero possible additional defections depending on what Baroni and Beck decide to do.

Comments (19)

  1. Rosi Efthim

    Senator Ronald Rice is a likely no. That’s his son, Newark Councilman Ron Rice, who is a solid supporter of marriage equality. Unfortunately, that Ron doesn’t get a vote in the NJ Senate.

  2. tabbycat31

    he’s one of GSE’s targets, and he needs to be reminded everyday that his district includes Asbury Park.

    I’ve been calling his office on a daily basis.  I’d post the # if I had my phone on me.

  3. Jay Lassiter

    ….at the trenton lobby day.  i’m jay and i was there…. what’s your name?

  4. TeenDem

    O’Toole would be against SSM considering he doesnt even support civil unions as his vote against it shows

  5. Bertin Lefkovic

    I was shocked to read that these two were going to be Yes votes, so I guess that I shouldn’t be too disappointed to find out that the reporting was erroneous.

    Is Ron Rice Sr. a definitive No vote?  If so, he and Sarlo basically cancel out Baroni and Beck, assuming that the two of them do the right thing, which means that if four of the six South Jersey State Senators vote the wrong way, we lose.

    Assuming that firstamend07 is telling us the truth about these Senators being free to vote their consciences and with Van Drew already being a No and Steve Sweeney being a very likely No, we need to get Yes votes from the remaining four.

    I want to believe that Beach and Redd are Yes votes, but I would feel better if John Adler were back in the State Senate and not in the House of Representatives.  Madden and Whelan are the biggest wildcards in the region.

  6. Thurman Hart
  7. denniscmcgrath

    Can be found here, in a column by Hank Kalet:


    If I’m reading this correctly, if no vote was tallied (if Hank’s list does not indicate Yes or No or Abstained) then that legislator was not present the day of the vote.

  8. Hank Kalet

    The 14th District Democrat is almost definitely a “no” in the Assembly, by the way.

  9. princetonblue

    I just called Senator Turner’s office (my rep.) and her office did not know if she had taken a position on the issue.  They told me they would send me an email with details on her position.

  10. sd007

    You should add in  Buono, Ruiz, and Cunningham as YES because they are co-sponsors of the bill.  


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