TRENTON, N.J.— Embattled New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie on Jan. 13 vetoed a bill that would have allowed his state’s transgender residents to change their gender on their birth certificates.
“It appears that this veto is arbitrary, capricious and designed to harm transgender people who are the most vulnerable among LGBT New Jerseyans,” said Barbra Casbar Siperstein, political director of the Gender Rights Advocacy Association of New Jersey (GRAANJ).
Garden State Equality Executive Director Tony Stevenson described Christie’s veto as “a vindictive move to punish the LGBT community after a year of tremendous progress.”
“This was a simple bureaucratic change, which would have offered tremendous support to the transgender community, and have zero effect on anyone else,” said Stevenson.
Christie vetoed the measure nearly a month after the New Jersey Senate approved it by a 21-11 vote margin. The bill passed in the state Assembly last June by a 43-27 vote margin with one abstention.
Christie is embroiled in a scandal involving aides who allegedly created massive traffic jams in Fort Lee because the mayor there wouldn’t endorse Christie’s re-election bid last year.