Barbara Buono and Milly Silva to be in six counties today: Your opportunity to catch them in person or watch Buono on the Martin Bashir Show. Both seem more confident, articulate, and comfortable these days. (See schedule below.)
Supporters of M. E. Exhale Today: With Gov. Christie’s decision yesterday and a sound ruling from Judge Jacobson left in place, M.E. is on solid footing in NJ. Nonetheless, the Legislature should still pass pass a revised M. E. bill.
The Attorney General yesterday wrote to the NJ Supreme Court saying simply, “Please accept this letter as a withdrawal of the appeal in the above referenced matter [Garden State Equality v. Paula Dow]. With the State no longer pursuing an appeal, the ruling of Trenton Superior Court Assignment Judge Mary C. Jacobson on September 27 is left standing. Judge Jacobson’s ruling is particularly nice because it does not include exemptions or restrictions. It states forthrghly that “This unequal treatment requires that New Jersey extend civil marriage to same-sex couples to satisfy the equal protection guarantees of the New Jersey Constitution.” In effect same-sex couples should be treated no differently.
What’s next: The Legislature should pass a revised bill – something equally simple. It should forgo exemptions that seemed necessary in the past to gain passage, like the reliigous exemptions, which the court did not address. (These exemptions based on the N. J. Constitution freedom of religion clause , I-4, should be no different for same-sex couples than for opposite-sex couples.) Also there may be need to clarify the status of Civil Unions. As the Supreme Court never actually ruled on the Summary Judgment and left the basic decision at the Superior Court level there would be additional protection for M. E. with the Legislature’s imprimatur. Christie would be hard-pressed to veto what the Supreme Court left standing, but he might quibble with (conditionally veto) the bill, so a veto-proof majority makes sense and should be achievable in this new environment.
Buono/Silva gubernatorial campaign: Barbara Buono: 10:45am, Meet the Candidates Event, Rossmoor Clubhouse, 437A Newport Way, Monroe Twp.; Barbara Buono: 12noon, Campaign event, Hudson County Community College, 70 Sip Ave., Jersey City; Barbara Buono: 1:00pm, College Forum, Bergen Community College, 400 Paramus Rd, Paramus; Barbara Buono: 4:00pm, Martin Bashir Interview, MSNBC; Barbara Buono: 6:30pm, Keynote Speech, Rider University, 2083 Lawrenceville Rd., Lawrence Township; Milly Silva: 7:45pm, fundraiser for Assemblyman Ralph Caputo, Nanina’s in the Park, 540 Mill St., Belleville; Milly Silva: 8:30pm, Democrats for Hawthorne Campaign Rally, Fire Company #2, 10 Llewellyn Ave., Hawthorne.
Christie/Gudagno gubernatorial campaign: Chris Christie: 11:00am, a Sandy housing and rental assistance program announcement, Meadowlands Family Success Center, Little Ferry.
Reps. Donald M. Payne, Jr. (NJ-10), Frank J. Pallone, Jr. (NJ-06), Rush Holt (NJ-12), and Leonard Lance (NJ-07) with U.S. Department of Energy Assistant Secretary Patricia Hoffman and PSE&G President Ralph LaRossa: 11:00am, press conference to hiighlight the need to invest in strengthening our power grid systems to prepare for future disasters, PSE&G Building, 80 Park Plaza, Newark.
Elizabeth Mayor Chris Bollwage: 11:30am, Press conference on climate change, its impact, and preparation for the future, Elizabeth Marina, intersection of Elizabeth Ave. and Front St., Elizabeth.
Open thread: Add an event taking place today of interest to our readers, or email items for this column the evening before to BillOrr563@gmail.com