Mayors officiate as New Jersey legalizes gay marriage

Wedding bells rang for the first time for same-sex couples in New Jersey just after midnight on Monday when the state became the 14th in the nation to legalize gay marriage.

Newark Mayor Cory Booker, a Democrat due to leave office this month after his election to the U.S. Senate last week, opened City Hall at midnight to perform some of the first ceremonies. Mayors in Lambertville, Red Bank and Jersey City did likewise.

The marriages took place after New Jersey’s Supreme Court ruled on Friday against a request by Republican Gov. Chris Christie to freeze a lower court ruling in favor of gay marriage until the top court could hear the state’s appeal in January and issue a final decision.

Moments after the state’s highest court denied Christie’s request, New Jersey municipalities began accepting applications for marriage licenses from same-sex couples.

In Newark, nine couples, both gay and straight, took their vows in the City Hall rotunda in a ceremony officiated by Booker, who said his tenure was ending on a high note.

“Tonight we have crossed a barrier,” Booker told the newlyweds and their families and friends. “While you all have fallen into love, the truth is the state of New Jersey has risen to love.”

Jenelle Torres, 42, and her longtime partner, Lydia Torres, 44, were among the first to marry. They had previously obtained a license in New York but were eager to wed in their home state.

“It’s monumental. I’m so thankful and humbled,” said Torres. “I’m just so proud to be a part of this. A part of history,” she said.

The ceremonies in Newark went off mostly without a hitch, though one man was ejected after yelling out that gay marriages were “unlawful in the sight of God.”

For other same sex couples planning to marry this week, the new marriage law fulfilled both personal and political aspirations.

“This has been a long time coming,” said Hoboken resident Allen Kratz, who plans to marry his partner of 28 years, Paul Somerville, at a private ceremony on Thursday.

The couple was legally wed in Oregon in 2004, but the Oregon Supreme Court nullified gay marriage a year later.

“We are very excited that now, finally, we get to marry,” Kratz said. “I know some political leaders think it’s too soon. But civil rights always come too soon for those in a position of power and never soon enough for those who have been denied life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”

Under state law, those seeking to marry in New Jersey must apply for a marriage license and then wait at least 72 hours.

The waiting period does not apply to couples who have been legally wed in the 13 states, plus the District of Columbia, that already recognize same-sex marriage.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Winning $7 million New York lottery ticket sold…

The only $7 million winning New York Lottery ticket for Monday's Cash4Life drawing was sold at a Queens 7-Eleven, officials said on Tuesday.

Local

Brooklyn man charged in roommate's stabbing death

A Brooklyn man accused of violently stabbing his roommate to death on Monday is in police custody and faces murder charges.

International

Dinosaurs could have survived asteroid strike

It turns out there is a good and a bad time for the planet to be hit by a meteor, and dinosaurs were just unlucky.…

National

OkCupid admits to Facebook-style experimenting on customers

By Sarah McBrideSAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - OkCupid, a top U.S. matchmaking website, intentionally mismatched users to test its technology, the IAC/InterActive Corp service said on…

Gossip

Playing the Field: Valentine's Day coupling edition

  It’s Valentine’s Day, a day created by Hallmark to make couples spend loads and loads of money on candy, flowers and gourmet dinners. Or…

Music

Incubus singer Brandon Boyd on his newest act,…

The rocker is releasing two new passion projects.

Movies

Interview: Brendan Gleeson on the way 'Calvary' depicts…

Brendan Gleeson talks about how his new film "Calvary" began over drinks and how his character here is the opposite of the lead in "The Guard."

Movies

'Get on Up' producer Mick Jagger on the…

Mick Jagger, a producer on the James Brown biopic "Get on Up," talks about the time had to tell the singer some bad news and his favorite JB record.

College

Playing the Field: Valentine's Day coupling edition

  It’s Valentine’s Day, a day created by Hallmark to make couples spend loads and loads of money on candy, flowers and gourmet dinners. Or…

MLB

Angelo Cataldi: Ryan Howard deserves better from Phillies

Just last week, Ryan Howard endured the embarrassment of a benching that was inevitable, and yet still shocking.

NFL

Larry Donnell has inside track in Giants tight…

Little-known Larry Donnell of Grambling State currently has the inside track, as the second-year player has received the bulk of the first-team reps.

NFL

Computer to Jets: Start Michael Vick over Geno…

Jets general manager John Idzik says the choice of who starts between second-year quarterback Geno Smith and veteran Michael Vick will be a “Jets decision.”

Career

What do you wear to a career fair?…

Getting that gig starts with presenting the most polished and memorable version of yourself, so refer to our expert fashion advice.

Style

Editors pick: Margiela's finger armor ring

These cool rings from Maison Martin Margiela are designed to overlap over the finger, covering each joint like armor.

Style

Givenchy champions diversity

Riccardo Tisci's uses a variety of ethnically diverse ladies for his spring campaign including Erykah Badu.

Wellbeing

Don't settle for the hotel fitness center with…

Travelers who want to skip the hotel fitness center in favor of local gyms that may offer better equipment, classes and amenities can turn to…