Second chance — could a N.J. gay marriage bill pass?

    We’re opening a conversation: Has the time come for gay marriage in New Jersey? The state senate will introduce gay marriage legislation as the first bill of the new session. Its chances may have improved.

    The New Jersey Senate will introduce gay marriage legislation as the first bill of the new two-year session. Advocates are saying the chances of passage have improved since it fizzled in the senate in 2010.

    Do you think gay marriage couldpass in New Jersey? Tell us.

    Senate President Steve Sweeney is among its main sponsors, along with incoming Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg (D-Bergen) and Sen. Ray Lesniak (D-Union). 

    After previously supporting the bill, Sweeney took a pass in 2010, fearing it would be vetoed by newly elected governor Republican Chris Christie. The senate rejected the bill 20-14, with three abstentions. It needs 21 to pass.

    Sweeney has called his inaction on the bill “the biggest mistake” of his legislative career. But now some believe he, as senate president, is in a better position to act as an advocate. And if Christie should veto the bill, some believe enough votes may be found among the senate and the assembly to override the veto.

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