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Chris Christie Vetoes Transgender Bill — Attempt To Divert Focus From Bridgegate?

by David Badash on January 13, 2014

in Discrimination,News,Politics

Post image for Chris Christie Vetoes Transgender Bill — Attempt To Divert Focus From Bridgegate?

When the entire nation is scrutinizing your every move, and there are not unreasonable talks of impeachment, you can do what other Republicans have demanded in similar situations — hold off on controversial decisions — or you can try to bulldoze out of the problem by changing the conversation.

Christie chose the latter.

In the fall of 2012, Republicans in Congress tried to stall on several controversial bills that President Obama supported by claiming that the new Congress — not the current representatives — should deal with controversial legislation, lest the “lame ducks” get a say.

The embattled Republican New Jersey Governor who is all of a sudden fighting for his political life decided to ignore the will of the voters — he may have won re-election but they oppose him on LGBT civil rights, by a large margin — and veto a bill that would have made it legal for transgender people to legally correct their birth certificates to match their gender.

In December, the New Jersey Senate passed passed A4097 and sent the bill to Christie for his signature.

Today he has vetoed it, and it the legislature has little change of overriding the veto.

Unlike with their federal identification documents, as the Advocate reported, “individuals born in New Jersey must prove that they have had some form of gender-confirming surgery before they can update their birth record. These surgeries generally cost tens of thousands of dollars, and often are not covered by health insurance, leaving many transgender individuals either unable or unwilling to undergo this method of treatment. Many trans individuals opt to medically transition solely through hormone replacement therapy. As New Jersey law stands currently, those individuals are not able to update their birth certificate.”

LGBT equality organizations are rightly furious.

“Governor Christies [sic] veto of this legislation was a vindictive move to punish the LGBT community after a year of tremendous progress,” Troy Stevenson, Executive Director of Garden State Equality said in a statement. “This was a simple bureaucratic change, which would have offered tremendous support to the transgender community, and have zero effect on anyone else. The governor’s security argument is disingenuous at best, as there is already a process for one to change their gender marker; this legislation would simply end an unnecessary surgical requirement. This malicious use of the veto pen is shameful and beneath the office of governor.”

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RRuinsky January 13, 2014 at 4:16 pm

Christie is a small minded mean vindictive man. That he would veto this bill? No surprise. He's as right wing as they come. Hopefully it will all catch up with the petty little creep from NJ.

colonelkira January 13, 2014 at 4:49 pm

So let me see if I understand……….when conservatives try (or succeed) in stopping legislatiuon, it's going against the "will of the voters", but when our allies do it, its because they are on the "right side of history?"………yet ANOTHER example of biased, mediocre "reporting" by this writer!

Having written that, what Christie did was appalling!

Peter Blaise January 14, 2014 at 8:46 am

In the story above in the line "… Today he has vetoed it, and it the legislature has little change of overriding the veto. …" it should be CHANCE, not CHANGE — a typo I often make, too.

This is not a "majority rules" thing because it relates to someone's civil rights to self control of their own identity, so the leanings of New Jersey voters OR Governor Christy should have nothing to do with someone's else's self control of their own identity.

Although a birth certificate is the testimony of the witness at the time, it is used for other purposes, and should either have gender and other "none of your business" information redacted, or be subject to the appropriate control and remedial review of the person who depends on it most — the person witnessed on the certificate as being born on a date in a jurisdiction.

Not their gender, not their race, not any information that is none of anybody else's business — only the date and jurisdiction of birth.

No more second class citizens, ever, please.

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