There will be a vote on toeivah marriage during the lame duck session of the New Jersey state legislature today. Even sponsors of the toeivah legislation are skeptical if there are enough votes to pass in the State Senate, but rabbonim and askanim have urged Yidden in New Jersey to call their state representatives to express dissatisfaction with the marriage redefinition bill.
Rav Simcha Bunim Cohen, rov of Khal Ateres Yeshaya in Lakewood, released the following statement during a phone message last night:
“Shalom aleichem. This is Simcha Bunim Cohen calling from Lakewood. As you know, tomorrow there’s a vote on one of the most important laws which is nogeiah to the whole world. Everybody should call their senators if possible and tomorrow should be mosef in tefillah, lechol hapachos 3 kapittlach Tehillim, and to learn extra Torah. In the zechus of the mitzvos that we are mekabel on ourselves tomorrow, the Aibishter should have rachmanus that this gezeirah ra’ah, this chok, should not be passed, chas veshalom, and we should be zoche to the geulah sheleimah al yedei Moshiach Tzidkeinu, bekarov mamesh.
If the bill does pass the State Senate, it would go to the Assembly which would also have to debate, and then hold a final vote.
Unlike most times in Trenton, this bill will get a vote even though legislative leaders are not sure it will pass.
Senate President Richard Codey said he doesn’t “know of anyone who necessarily has changed their opinion” since last month, when the sponsors concluded there wasn’t enough support and requested it be pulled from a vote.
Only 13 senators have publicly said they’ll vote for the measure, far short of the 21 needed for passage. And two who were undecided won’t be voting: Sen. Diane Allen (R-Burlington), who is too ill, and Dana Redd, who gave up her Senate seat when she became Camden mayor this week.