Chris Christie | New Jersey | News | Piers Morgan

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NJ Governor Chris Christie Says Gays Aren't Sinners: VIDEO

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CNN's Piers Morgan asked NJ GOP Governor Chris Christie last night if he thinks homosexuality is a sin, and about his views on same-sex marriage.

Says Christie: "I've always believed that people are born with the previous disposition to be homosexual. So I think if someone is born that way it's very difficult to say that it's a sin."

Christie adds that he doesn't believe that gays should be given the freedom to marry: "I believe we can have civil unions that can help to give the same type of legal rights to same-sex couples that marriage gives them."

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

Unfortunately, a commissioned study done in Christie's own state of New Jersey in 2008 showed that civil unions do not go far enough in providing equality to the state's citizens:

"The commission held three public hearings last year where the majority of the testimony came from people who were in civil unions and said they were still not being treated the way married couples are by government agencies, employers and others. For instance, the commission finds that many companies in the state that are self-insured, and therefore are regulated by federal rather than state law, refuse to provide health insurance to the partners of their employees. While employers in Massachusetts could legally do the same thing, most do not, according to the report. The commission also finds that many people in the state do not understand civil unions. 'Civil union status is not clear to the general public," the report says, "which creates a second-class status.' The commission's report says the misunderstanding of civil unions makes it more difficult for a child to grow up in New Jersey with gay parents, or to be gay themselves."

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Comments

  1. No we are not sinners, just less than.

    Posted by: qjersey | Jun 15, 2011 9:59:08 AM


  2. It should be noted that, in the months between his 2009 election and 2010 inauguration, he worked behind the scenes to successfully pressure Republican state legislators to vote against equality. Another victory for those here who routinely argue that the interests of our community would be well-served by withholding our votes from Dems!

    On that topic, we should also note that the battle for marriage equality in New York would already be over had two Dems whose races were so close that they were not called for more than a month after last November's election prevailed. Both supported marriage equality and, with their votes, we'd have a majority at this moment. Again, well played by those who urge us to sit out elections and withhold our votes from Dems!

    Posted by: Patric | Jun 15, 2011 10:00:36 AM


  3. It's sad that this is "refreshing" considering what the GOP candidates for President have to say about homosexuality.

    The biggest mistake defenders of traditional marriage made was NOT supporting the creation of civil unions that actually do provide the same benefits as marriage as a real option for gay couples. Because now that we have seen what an utter failure they are in giving couples the same recognition, we refuse to accept anything less than marriage.

    Posted by: Sam | Jun 15, 2011 10:02:01 AM


  4. Hey ButtGutt/Christie....how you STFU...and I do believe GLUTTONY is a SIN!

    Posted by: Disgusted Gay American | Jun 15, 2011 10:04:13 AM


  5. They really are hung up on the word marriage arent they. We can have anything they have, but NOT 'that' word. Seems really weird to me.

    Posted by: rovex | Jun 15, 2011 10:15:45 AM


  6. I am so over politicians who have never read a newspaper or a history book. I hope someone points out to Mr. Christie that 'separate but equal' - what he claims for civil unions - is always separate but never equal. This has been proven over and over again. There is jurisprudence at every level showing the courts agree that it is not equal. Several of these rulings happened during his lifetime so he wouldn't have had to even read a book, just watched the news at the dinner table.

    Posted by: MikeBoston | Jun 15, 2011 10:16:48 AM


  7. when people say that man/woman marriage is 'special' what they are basically saying is that Straight is better and different from gay. So how is that not pure descrimanation?

    Posted by: paul | Jun 15, 2011 10:32:43 AM


  8. I think we all agree civil unions are second-rate, and a second-class conferral of rights. However, the fact that Christie will go against the religious right grain of his own party and say (A) that gay individuals don't choose to "be gay," and that we're "born gay" - and (B) that while he doesn't agree with full marriage, he wants gay couples to have civil unions with all the rights that straights do - that courage should be applauded.

    And no- I'm not a GOProud-er. I am a loyal Dem and Obama supporter. I just think when you have Santorum, Bachmann, Pawlenty, Cain, Gingrich all stating how homophobic and anti- ANY gay rights they are, we should welcome the support we get from people like Jon Huntsman and Christie.

    And as a guy who lives in a Deep South state where our anti-gay marriage amendment was not only passed, but written as to exclude civil unions AND domestic partnerships- even second-class is better than nothing. Yeah- I want full marriage equality too - but we may have to use stepping stones to get there.

    Posted by: Scott | Jun 15, 2011 10:43:13 AM


  9. As the election draws nearer we're going to see more and more Republicans begin to straddle this line as they pander to the gay community. They want to be elected and if they can con the gay voter into believing they care about them in some minute capacity, they hope to grab their vote. And there are gay people, mostly the young, who will defend and justify their support of guys like Christie.

    It is our job, as enlightened gay people, to work to ensure we vote as a solid block and shut out any politician who wishes to do us harm, who wishes to keep us on the sidelines, who works to placate us with civil unions or statements that they now believe we are born gay and therefore, less then they are and need special help.

    If you're in Christie's area and are registered to vote, vote the sob out of office. That's the best thing you can do as a gay person.

    Posted by: OS2Guy | Jun 15, 2011 10:55:39 AM


  10. The GOP doesn't hate gays. They just don't want to see us, hear about us, know us or otherwise ever have to think about us. Denying us equal rights in any manner keeps us invisible to them and that is how they would prefer it.

    @Scott. Living here in Georgia, I feel your pain and understand your point; however, I don't think that Christie giving in on the point that gays are born that way constitutes support - it is merely that he understands science/psychology to some extent. And it is only courageous in that it goes against his party doctrine. I believe that if Christie were to ever make a serious attempt for the nomination, that he would quickly become just as anti-gay as his colleagues.

    Posted by: Chadd | Jun 15, 2011 11:04:31 AM


  11. When are journalists going to enter the 21st century? We should be beyond the point when it's acceptable to ask a politician if homosexuality is a sin, or how it fits with their personal religious beliefs. It's irrelevant, and offensive. Would he ask Christie if he thinks gluttony is a sin? Of course not.

    And when are journalists going to follow-up with a professional question when politicians say, I think marriage is a special man-woman institution just because I do--no rational justification, pure opinion. That is not an answer. Journalists need to ask specifically why it is acceptable to exclude gay couples from civil marriage; instead--due to timidity or their own homophobia--they let politician after politician off the hook.

    Posted by: Ernie | Jun 15, 2011 11:06:07 AM


  12. Don't you guys think you are over-reacting a little bit? Governor Christie's position is EXACTLY the same as that of Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton. So at least if you are going to slam him, be fair about it.

    Also, in New Jersey at least, civil unions provide EXACTLY the same benefits as marriage--the law was literally written to match verbatim the marriage law because that is what the New Jersey Supreme Court directed the State Assembly to do.

    I am not defending his opposition or that of anyone to same-sex marriage, just pointing out that the kind of extreme criticism in this thread so far is off base. I mean, he is a Republican with Presidential aspirations, so making a statement that he is in favor of civil unions was actually quite courageous, given how adamant many in his party are in opposition to that.

    Finally, if the law is not fully understood by some yet, that is always the case with every new law--it takes time to implement a law and sometimes court cases will be required to reinforce it.....and I can assure you it would be (will be) the same with marriage when the law changes....

    Posted by: Rick | Jun 15, 2011 11:07:44 AM


  13. And by the way, none of us are "born gay", anymore than anyone is "born straight" or "born bi". An individual's sexuality, based on the current understanding in the behavioral sciences, takes shape between birth and age 3 and is apparently the consequence of a number of factors, but there is no evidence at all that genetics has anything to do with it.

    And I would strongly suggest that those of you who think it is to our advantage to pursue the "born this way" idea think again--if a "gay gene" ever were discovered, what do you think the effect would be? You got it--the parents would resort to genetic engineering to ensure that their offspring did not have it and gay people would go extinct. Is that what you want?

    On the other hand, the lack of genetic causation means that, once we destroy the taboo against homosexuality, our numbers can increase substantially, as people with latent bisexual tendencies become free to explore them.

    Stop playing the game on the homophobes' turf--it is a losing proposition.

    Posted by: Rick | Jun 15, 2011 11:15:21 AM


  14. @Scott: you're right that there are others in the GOP who treat us worse. But to say we should applaud him because there are worse is kind of like applauding someone for slapping your face because someone else punched your nose.
    When they talk about "the same type" of rights or rights "similar" to the rights of others, it's never the same as just being treated identically as everyone else under the same laws.

    Imagine if a Saudi politician said that women should not be allowed to vote, but we can rewrite laws to allow women to "cast a ballot" and that action would be similar to voting, but only men will be included in the laws pertaining to the word "vote.
    Politicians might say that the woman's "ballot" is different from a man's "vote" by some technical wording.
    Maybe it counts municipally but not nationally, or maybe a "religious exemption" is allowed where women can be refused a ballot by religiously-inclined officials.
    Maybe the status of the "ballots" is vague enough that no one really knows what it means except that it's "different" from real votes, so they tend not to be counted or are not always counted
    the same.
    Maybe men can vote at 10 different locations in any city, while women have to travel to a special office in Riyadh, and have a waiting period (similar to a lot of civil union laws) where they have to have been residents for longer than men.

    It would be a step TOWARD equality, but it is never equality until everyone is dealt with under the same laws with the same words.

    Posted by: Gregv | Jun 15, 2011 11:18:37 AM


  15. Anything to take the focus on how he used taxpayer funds to take a plane to his kid's sporting event. What a toad.

    Posted by: Jack M | Jun 15, 2011 11:49:01 AM


  16. I meant "take the focus off."

    Posted by: Jack M | Jun 15, 2011 11:52:20 AM


  17. Rick, I have great sympathy with the arguments you make about the reliance of members of our community on arguments that we shouldn't be the subjects of discrimination because we can't help being gay but I object to your comparison of Christie's position and the President's position as if you were comparing apples and apples.

    Some important differences:

    Chris Christie will next face election in 2013 and in a state where support for marriage equality already comfortably exceeds 50%.

    The President will next face election next year and his fate will be determined in places like North Carolina, Virginia, Ohio, Missouri and Florida, where support for marriage equality is a minority position. We may not wish that politics would impact matters of basic fairness and our fundamental values as a nation but they do.

    Chris Christie has actively campaigned against marriage equality, exerting pressure on Republican state senators in the months between his November 2009 election and his January 2010 inauguration to ensure that they voted against a marriage equality bill. There's been much speculation that his bullying of state supreme court members more recently intimidated some of them into not immediately hearing arguments in the pending marriage equality case in New Jersey. http://blog.nj.com/njv_bob_braun/2010/08/nj_supreme_court_justices_who.html

    While we might wish that he would have done more, the President has expressed his opposition to the ultimately successful efforts to overturn marriage rights in California and in Maine and, in a move with few historical precedents, he has declined to any longer defend DOMA in the courts because of his conclusion, and the conclusion of his AG, that the law is unconstitutional.

    As significantly as any of the foregoing, let's not forget that the way in which these two men may have their most profound impact on the rights of LGBT people for decades to come is through their judicial appointments. The President has done admirably in appointing Justice Sotomayor and, perhaps to a lesser extent, Justice Kagan to the Supreme Court. I expect that they will be votes in favor of equality when a marriage equality case finally hits the Supremes. Christie, on the other hand, bulled past tradition in the Garden State by refusing to grant tenure to a moderate African-American supreme court justice appointed previously by McGreevey so that he could instead appoint a Republican donor to that seat.

    In my opinion, it's simplistic to say that Christie's record and the President's record on this issue are identical.

    Posted by: Patric | Jun 15, 2011 12:45:15 PM


  18. Second class status again.!!!!!..separate but not equal..!!!!!!...


    I DON'T THINK SO!

    Posted by: Brains | Jun 15, 2011 12:45:27 PM


  19. This is being decided in the NJ Supreme Court, so he has little to worry about politically.

    Posted by: anon | Jun 15, 2011 12:48:37 PM


  20. I'll applaud his courage to step out of line with the rabid bigots of his party even though I probably will never even consider voting for him or any Republican.

    Posted by: NY2.0 | Jun 15, 2011 12:51:34 PM


  21. This is what it must feel like to have white reporters ask politicians questions about black civil rights issues.

    I don't fricken' care whether he thinks I'm a sinner. I care if he support FEDERAL RECOGNITION of those New Jersey CUs.

    Posted by: BobN | Jun 15, 2011 3:50:16 PM


  22. Marriage is a failed institution, just look around at all the divorces and marriages of convenience. The only role marriage plays nowadays is for inheritance and financial arrangements (child support). Who needs it? But even though I don't want to marry I want the right to mess up my life just like a hetero.

    All these politicians talk like they are representing a state religion instead of a secular government. Marriage is a legal contract not a sacrament. Let the churches preside over their sacraments and leave the legal questions to the government.

    Posted by: equality now | Jun 15, 2011 5:30:35 PM


  23. I live in NJ and can't wait to vote his fat bigot ass out of office.

    Posted by: jaragon | Jun 15, 2011 5:41:22 PM


  24. So maybe he said one decent thing. He can't be separated from his party, and they're still savages to the nth degree. For any change in the political winds, he could easily become one of the most rabid homophobes in the party.
    I'm just saying. Let's not get all gooey over one comment.

    Posted by: Wilberforce | Jun 15, 2011 11:08:20 PM


  25. Does this mean he's not running for President? The Republicans won't nominate someone who says the gays aren't sinners.

    Posted by: RedOnTheGreg | Jun 16, 2011 12:32:19 AM


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