New Jersey’s gay couples are gaining all the rights and responsibilities of marriage under state law as New Jersey moves to become the third in the nation to institute civil unions and the fifth to offer some version of marriage.
Gov. Jon S. Corzine planned to sign the civil unions bill on Thursday.
When the law takes effect Feb. 19, New Jersey will join Connecticut and Vermont as states that allow civil unions for gay couples. Massachusetts allows gay couples to marry, while California has domestic partnerships that bring full marriage rights.
Gay couples granted civil unions in New Jersey will have adoption, inheritance, hospital visitation and medical decision-making rights and the right not to testify against a partner in state court.
Like I’ve said before, civil unions are not marriage. Not by a long shot. But they will give same-sex couples in New Jersey rights they didn’t have in that state before. (And so long as they stay in New Jersey, they’ll keep them.)
Back on the USAToday homepage, next to the link to the New Jersey story is a link that says “Vote,” which pops up a poll on same-sex marraige.
The results are interesting.
Not many votes right now, probably because the link isn’t all that easy to find. Not a scientific poll either. But interesting, nonetheless. Particularly if you read the first two results to suggest that 71% support legal rights and protections for same-sex couples, whether it’s called marriage or not.
If you get the chance, go vote.