First same-sex marriages to take place on Monday - NBC40.net

First same-sex marriages to take place on Monday

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LOWER TWP. -

The New Jersey Supreme Court ruled Friday, that despite an appeal from the state, same sex marriages can be performed starting Monday.

A local gay couple says they have waited years for this moment, and are preparing to exchange marriage vows at their home Monday afternoon.

David Calvert said, "I'm just happy I can be married to the person I love, regardless of our gender."

David Calvert and David Collins have known each other for 22 long years, and by 6 o'clock on Monday evening, the two men will officially be recognized as a married couple in the state of New Jersey.

Collins told NBC40, "It is going to be a historical day in the state of New Jersey. I'm sure there are going to be a lot more couples tying the knot tomorrow."

On Friday, New Jersey's Supreme Court unanimously ruled that same sex marriages may commence on Monday.

New Jersey thus becomes the first state to usher in gay marriage since the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the Defense of Marriage Act, which banned federal recognition of state sanctioned marriages. Calvert said, "With the overturning of DOMA and everything, the dominoes have fallen into place very quickly."

Back on July 19th, the two men were married in Provincetown Massachusetts because they said they couldn't wait any longer for New Jersey. Both men say they doubted whether or not they would ever be allowed to marry in their home state.

Calvert told NBC40, "I never thought it would happen anywhere, quite frankly."

And because most of their friends and family were not able to be at their first wedding in Massachusetts, the two men say their second opportunity to tie the knot will be extra special because they will be able to share the moment with their closest friends and family.

Calvert said, "Being married around home, around family and friend is what is meaningful to me." Collins explained, "Marriage is marriage. It doesn't matter who it is between. Like I said before, you can't help who you fall in love with."

Because the two men are getting re-married, they will not have a 72-hour waiting period like other gay couples applying for a marriage license.

David and David say around 3 o'clock on Monday they will head to the Lower Township Municipal Hall to buy their marriage license before their ceremony.

The state had appealed the lower court ruling allowing for same sex marriages.

The New Jersey Supreme Court will begin hearing arguments in the case in January, but decided that in the meantime the marriages must be recognized.

Governor Chris Christie’s administration says that although the governor disagrees with the ruling, he is instructing municipalities to comply with the court's decision.

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