New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie followed through on his word Friday, vetoing a gay marriage bill passed by the state’s legislature a day earlier.
“I am adhering to what I've said since this bill was first introduced - an issue of this magnitude and importance, which requires a constitutional amendment, should be left to the people of New Jersey to decide," Christie said in a statement.
Christie is urging the legislature to put the measure on the ballot in the form of a referendum.
“This is the only path to amend our state Constitution and the best way to resolve the issue of same-sex marriage in our state,” he said.
Democrats were not surprised by the veto. Christie, a Republican, announced his intentions last month at a town hall meeting.
Yet Senate President Stephen Sweeney, a Democrat, denounced the governor's action and vowed to work to override it.
“Governor Christie's veto is a shameful act hidden behind the guise of a public referendum. Today, he firmly planted his feet on the wrong side of history,” he said in a statement. “He had a chance to do the right thing, and failed miserably.”