Cory Booker To Start Marrying Gay NJ Couples At Stroke Of Midnight On Monday

cory-bookerSenator-Elect Cory Booker is wasting no time exercising his political muscle. Before Mr. Booker goes to Washington, he will marry same-sex couples in his hometown of Newark, New Jersey beginning at 12:01 AM on Monday.

According to BuzzFeed, the Newark mayor, who trounced his gay-baiting opponent Steve Lonegan to win the Senate seat on Wednesday, will marry at least 10 couples on the first floor rotunda of Newark City Hall. However, the New Jersey Supreme Court may issue an order before anyone says “I do” as it considers an appeal to a September 27 decision by Judge Mary Jacobson.

Jacobson ruled that “[s]ame-sex couples must be allowed to marry in order to obtain equal protection of the law under the New Jersey Constitution,” beginning October 21. Although Governor and opportunistic gay marriage opponent Chris Christie appealed the ruling, the state’s Supreme Court is still deciding on whether or not to pay any attention to it. If the high court fails to rule, Jacobson’s decree will go into effect on Monday.

Meanwhile, New Jersey cities including gay mecca Asbury Park are gearing up for their big gay wedding days and are already accepting applications for marriage licenses. The Newark couples seeking to get married by Booker need to file their necessary paperwork by 10 am Friday. Each couple is allowed to bring up to five guests and are required to be at City Hall an hour prior to the ceremony.

If all goes well and the Supreme Court ignores Chris Christie — as everyone should learn to do — Newark City Hall will probably look something like this:

You know the queens love a showtune.


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  • Dakotahgeo

    Absolute all the best to Corey, and the newly weds in Monday and in the future. Maybe you might ask Christie to pour coffee or bus dishes but why would a happy couple even entertain that thought?!?

  • Kangol

    This is great news, like the great news about him winning and becoming New Jersey’s Senator-elect.

    I also hope the incredibly smart, handsome, dynamic Senator Boo ker finds someone who’ll be his soulmate, and they can share a happy life together.

    Congratulations, Senator Boo ker!

  • Scribe38

    I love this guy… Happy I donated to his campaign, happy he did not bow to pressure to claim he was 100% heterosexual. I look forward to seeing what he can get done in the Senate.

  • Cam

    Congratulations to the couples!

  • HirsuteOne

    The Supreme Court of New Jersey already endorsed Marriage Equality, condemned the state constitution’s discrimination and ordered the legislature to fix the problem in their 2006 decision in Lewis v. Harris. It’s a long shot to think they would rule differently now, especially after the recent SCOTUS input on the issue.

    Congrats to the new couples and to the ones who started this march to Equality in 2002:

    Mark Lewis and Dennis Winslow
    Suyin and Sarah Lael
    Saundra Toby-Heath and Alicia Heath-Toby
    Craig Hutchison and Chris Lodewyks
    Diane Marini and the late Marilyn Maneely
    Karen and Marcye Nicholson-Mcfadden
    Maureen Kilian and Cindy Meneghin

  • grero

    @Scribe38: Whatever Wall Street wants :-)

  • HirsuteOne

    The Supreme Court Of New Jersey refused the stay….Marriage Equality has arrived!

  • HirsuteOne

    And a big THANK YOU to Garden State Equality, the 2011 plaintiffs, couples and families:

    Daniel Weiss and John Grant; Marsha Shapiro and Louise Walpin; Maureen Kilian and Cindy Meneghin; Sarah Kilian-Meneghin, a minor, by and through her guardians; Erica and Tevonda Bradshaw; and Teverico Barack Hayes Bradshaw, a minor, by and through his guardians; Marcye and Karen Nicholson-Mcfadden; Kasey Nicholson-Mcfadden, a minor, by and through his Guardians; Maya Nicholson-Mcfadden, a minor, by and through her guardians; Thomas Davidson and Keith Heimann; Marie Heimann Davidson, a minor, by and through her Guardians; Grace Heimann Davidson, a minor, by and through her guardians.

  • HirsuteOne

    This is exactly the precedent we’ve been waiting for…a ruling on the language in a state constitution. This is the step that leads to nullification of the remaining state constitutional amendments and full marriage equality in the USA!

  • Dakotahgeo

    @HirsuteOne: You are spot on the mark! I’ve guesstimated <5 years for full marriage equality, was down to <3 years, but with these present day Judicial decisions, I'd now say within 1-2 years, hoping so anyway, and there is no way for the states to stop it!

  • HirsuteOne


    I would say within 1 – 2 years. We have so many state cases pending, it’s only a matter of time.

  • Dakotahgeo

    @HirsuteOne: Der’s gonna be a run on Depends and Kleenex for the old white-hair socialites when the States fall like dominoes for Marriage Equality! Once it starts, it ain’t gonna stop for noooooooo-body!!! Kudos to you!

  • JDJase

    @HirsuteOne: “This is exactly the precedent we’ve been waiting for…a ruling on the language in a state constitution.”

    What? Not really. The New Jersey case is in state court and based on the state constitution which does NOT have a constitutional amendment banning marriage. This case is not at all different from Massachusetts, Iowa, etc. A ruling based “on the language in a state constitution” is nothing new.

    The problem is that most of the remaining states without marriage equality DO have constitutional amendments — a state court cannot find something IN the state constitution as violating the constitution (constitution can’t violate itself).

    The only way we can handle those states through courts is through Federal Courts arguing that the state constitutional amendment violates the federal constitution. Unfortunately, there ALREADY is precedent in this as it’s not on our side. The 8th Circuit has already ruled that a state constitutional amendment doesn’t violate the federal constitution (overturning a ruling from the federal district court finding Nebraska’s amendment unconstitutional).

    Obviously different circuits are going to come to different conclusions, but that doesn’t bode well for the states in the 8th circuit that already have that precedent (unless the 8th circuit somehow takes the recent Supreme Court rulings into advisement). So that means that North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Missouri, and Arkansas are screwed for now (Iowa and Minnesota are the only 8th circuit states with marriage equality).

    Not trying to rain on you and Dakotahgeo’s parade, but 1-2 years is completely unrealistic. Even if we didn’t go circuit-by-circuit and went to the Supreme Court again, that would take 4 years at least. But, this step in New Jersey has zero, zero impact on other states. Perhaps you’re thinking of the federal court case we have going in Michigan? THAT case would be the game changer.

  • Dakotahgeo

    @JDJase: Not raining at all, JDJase. I’ve been waiting for someone with some explanation for all the different laws. My partner and I just might have to move to Minneapolis, MN to live but DAMN, it’s cold up there! I am happily living in KS in Government housing under Federal law so we can live together even if SS marriage is not covered here. Thank you a bundle for the legal help!

  • HirsuteOne


    Jumping ahead to 2014 when the Supreme Court of New Jersey rules on this. A decision in our favor will factor in and set precedent.

  • HirsuteOne

    @JDJase: I meant to add the notion of persuasive authority will be a factor in decisions in other states.

  • jwrappaport

    @JDJase: Not sure I agree with everything, although you’re right to curb your enthusiasm. The ruling (and its likely unanimous vindication next year) certainly has persuasive authority, especially with respect to the oft-repeated charge that a Supreme Court ruling mandating nationwide gay marriage would be moving too far too fast. It will also be persuasive to states that do not permit same-sex marriage but do not have a constitutional amendment barring them.

    As for the Bruning case in the Eighth Circuit, it was decided in 2006, which may as well be a different world for gay rights. Windsor, Obama, and the demise of DADT changed the game, and I’d bet that the next incarnation of Bruning will make its way to the Supreme Court, which will rule for us. I give it 4-6 years.

  • JDJase

    @jwrappaport: Well, as for persuasive authority, that may be a factor, but it certainly isn’t game changing, especially since we already have this persuasive authority from other states, which is the point I was making. And while you’re right that it may have persuasive authority in states without constitutional bans, my point was that we’re almost through those low-hanging fruit states.

    The only states left with no marriage and no constitutional ban are Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Indiana (though there’s a very real possibility of that changing soon), Illinois, Wyoming, and New Mexico (and sorta Hawaii but we shouldn’t have to worry about that soon). That leaves 29 states with constitutional bans. So my point is the only people that a New Jersey Supreme Court ruling will have a major affect on are New Jersians (is that the right word?)

    The 8th circuit could be complicated. It tends to be a pretty conservative circuit (it’s where I practice). So, whether they will take advisement from SCOTUS in Windsor on the 14th amendment is questionable. Maybe they will, maybe they won’t. Eventually, sure they will. The question is when that eventuality will come to fruition.

    So essentially, I agree with you as my point was merely to point out that nationwide marriage in the next 1-2 years is unrealistic. On your 4-6 year estimate, I could probably agree with that.

    PS. It is so awesome to be able to have an adult conversation here, I’m so used to the comments being childish bitchfests! ;)

  • Dakotahgeo

    @JDJase: Thank YOU x 1000! for your PS! I heartily agree with you that these blogs/stories need professional, educated conversations. I originally felt marriage equality for all (persons and States) would be a reality in <5 years, then I lowered it to <3 years, then 1-2 years, and you now state that that might be pushing the envelope a bit fast. How do class action lawsuits, ACLU, Lambda Legal, et al, fit into this scheme of events? NJ was not a surprise, but the time element was. how do you plead? ;-)

  • AngelicaCarter

    my Aunty Allison recently got a nice six month old GMC Sierra by working parttime from a macbook… over here,,,

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