Senator Joe Pennacchio (R- Morris/Essex/Passaic) issued the following statement in advance of the Senate’s consideration of S-1, the “Marriage Equality and Religious Exemption Act”:
Today, the Senate will consider a piece of legislation that has zero chance of becoming law.
The bill’s sponsors have told us that public opinion justifies the Senate passing a bill that will not become law. If poll data is now driving the Senate’s agenda, Senator Bateman’s constitutional amendment placing same sex marriage before the voters should be scheduled for a vote, as it enjoys majority public support.
By that standard, we should also eliminate the grandfather clause in the dual office holding ban, change the current school funding formula to give the same amount per student to each school district, and pass pay to play reform that applies to every interest group including public employee unions.
The latest public polling indicates that the public’s top priorities are jobs and property taxes. I realize this is a sensitive issue for many people. However, making this the number one issue by designating the bill “S-1” simply does not reflect the overall will of the vast majority of New Jersey citizens.