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New Jersey’s Christie Says He’s ‘Not a Fan’ of Gay Marriage

June 26 (Bloomberg) -- New Jersey Governor Chris Christie said he is “not a fan” of same-sex marriage and wouldn’t follow neighboring New York’s lead by legalizing it.

While New Jersey allows gay couples to form civil unions, marriage should be between a man and a woman, Christie said today on NBC’s “Meet the Press” program.

New York on June 24 became the sixth U.S. state to give gay couples the right to wed. Governor Andrew Cuomo signed the measure into law after the New York’s Republican-controlled state Senate approved the measure earlier that night in a 33-29 vote. New Jersey’s Senate rejected a gay marriage bill backed by then-Governor Jon Corzine in January 2010.

“In our state, we’re going to continue to pursue civil unions,” said Christie, 48, a first-term Republican. “I am not a fan of same-sex marriage. It’s not something that I support.”

Proponents of New Jersey’s failed gay-marriage bill had said the state’s current civil union law doesn’t guarantee same-sex couples federal protection and equal treatment by insurance providers, hospitals and out-of-state firms that don’t recognize the arrangements.

“I believe marriage should be between one man and one woman,” Christie said. “I wouldn’t sign a bill like the one that was in New York.”

Iowa, Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts and Connecticut issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples, as does the District of Columbia, according to the Washington-based Human Rights Campaign, which advocates equal rights for gay, bisexual and transgender people. New York and Maryland recognize such marriages from other jurisdictions.

New York’s new law, enabling same-sex couples to marry in the state, will take effect in 30 days. New York is the nation’s third most-populous state, with 19.4 million residents.

Christie, who has said he won’t seek the Republican presidential nomination for 2012, also demurred when asked whether he’d have any interest in running for vice president.

“The person who picks me as vice president would have to be sedated,” Christie said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Molly Peterson in Washington at mpeterson9@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Ann Hughey at ahughey@bloomberg.net

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