TRENTON -- After 90 minutes of impassioned debate that invoked the sweep of American history, the state Senate today voted down a bill to legalize same-sex marriage in New Jersey
. Gay-rights advocates immediately said they would bring their campaign to the courts.
The final tally — with 20 senators opposing the measure, 14 supporting it and three abstentions — reflects a dramatic shift in the state’s political landscape since Gov. Jon Corzine lost his bid for re-election to Republican Chris Christie in November.
Christie, the former U.S. Attorney for New Jersey, came out strongly against the bill, emboldening opponents of same-sex marriage and drawing undecided senators to the Republican fold.