Garden State Equality, Freedom to Marry, HRC Applaud NJ Sen. Sweeney’s Stand Against Marriage Ballot


For Immediate Release

Press Contacts:

Steven Goldstein
Garden State Equality
(917) 449-8918
Michael Cole-Schwartz
Communications Director
(202) 216-1553
Nicole Collins Bronzan
Communications Director
Freedom to Marry
(646) 375-2044

Montclair – Garden State Equality, Freedom to Marry and the Human Rights Campaign strongly reiterate their opposition to the idea of a referendum in New Jersey on marriage and applaud Senate President Steve Sweeney, one of the nation’s most steadfast champions of equality, for his statement yesterday that he will not post a referendum bill to committee.

As Senator Sweeney stated so wisely: “I do not believe you put civil rights on the ballot, period. It is the job of elected officials to ensure that everyone is provided equal protection and equal rights under the law. We should not hide from that responsibility. We should embrace it.”

Freedom to Marry and the Human Rights Campaign were key national supporters, with our state and local partners, in the four Election Day victories at the ballot in Maine, Maryland, Minnesota and Washington State. Even as we celebrate those milestones, we continue to believe that ballot measures to determine equal protection are offensive to the rights of minorities and hold unspeakable potential for divisiveness.

Moving forward, we will continue to push for state legislative action as the right course for affirming the right of same-sex couples to marry. In New Jersey, Freedom to Marry and the Human Rights Campaign stand with Garden State Equality in the fight to achieve an override of Governor Christie’s veto. Our organizations will work together, as we have before, to end marriage discrimination in New Jersey and to provide emotional, financial and legal security to same-sex couples and their families at last.


Garden State Equality is New Jersey’s largest civil rights organization. Since Garden State Equality’s founding in 2004, New Jersey has enacted 213 LGBT civil rights laws at the state, county and local levels and is honored to work with its national partners Freedom to Marry and the Human Rights Campaign to bring marriage equality to New Jersey.

Freedom to Marry is the campaign to win marriage nationwide. We are pursuing our Roadmap to Victory by working to win the freedom to marry in more states, grow the national majority for marriage, and end federal marriage discrimination. We partner with individuals and organizations across the country to end the exclusion of same-sex couples from marriage and the protections, responsibilities, and commitment that marriage brings.

The Human Rights Campaign is the largest national lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender political organization with members throughout the country. It effectively lobbies Congress, provides campaign support and educates the public to ensure that LGBT Americans can be open, honest and safe at home, at work and in the community.