Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey said Republicans should not abandon their opposition to gay marriage, Time magazine reported.
The issue is "settled" in New Jersey, given Democratic control of the legislature and recent judicial rulings, Christie acknowledged. While opposition to single-sex marriage is a plank in the GOP platform,
it should not be part of the national Republican campaign. "It should be done state by state," he said.
"I don't think that there's going to be some major referee who's going to say now it's time to stop. Certainly I'm not going to, because these are opinions that I feel strongly about."
Christie continued: "The country will resolve this over a period of time. But do I think it's resolved now? No."
It was necessary to conduct the debate with mutual respect, he added.
Christie said he had accepted last year that he could not block same-sex marriage in New Jersey. "When I know that I've been defeated you don't bang your head against a wall and spend taxpayer money to do it. Absent a change in the legislature, I think at the moment it's settled law in New Jersey," Time reported.
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The possible 2016 presidential candidate said he could not forecast whether the momentum in support of gay marriage could be reversed. "I don't know, I don't have a crystal ball."
He made his remarks on the sidelines of the National Governors Association's 106th Summer Meeting in Nashville which ends on July 13th.
Some other Republican governors opposed to single-sex marriage took a similar tone, the Associated Press reported.
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, a possible presidential contender, said that while "those on the left" were pushing the issue, Republicans have been focused on economic affairs.
Gov. Terry Branstad of Iowa said, "I'm a religious conservative, I'm a Catholic, I'm pro-life, [but] I think the people of Iowa look to me to provide leadership in bringing good jobs and growing the Iowa economy."
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