News :: Politics

NJ Gov. Calls Gay Lawmaker ’Numbnuts’ For Segregationist Comparison

by Jason St. Amand
National News Editor
Tuesday Jan 31, 2012
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New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie called an openly gay lawmaker "numb nuts" while explaining his desire to put gay marriage to a vote in New Jersey, NJ.com reported.

Last week, Christie said that he wants the state’s citizens to vote on the issue of same-sex marriage and compared the argument over marriage equality to Southern segregation thus: "The fact of the matter is I think people would have been happy to have a referendum on civil rights rather than fighting and dying in the streets in the South."

During a statehouse press conference on Monday, the governor explained his remarks saying, "The political climate in the South didn’t give them the option to have a referendum back then. They wished they would have had the option, but the political climate did not permit it, meaning they would not win."

Christie then used the term "numbnuts" to describe openly gay Assemblyman Reed Gusciora (D), who compared the governor to Southern segregationists.

"Govs. Lester Maddox and George Wallace would have found allies in Chris Christie over efforts by the Justice Department to end segregation in the South," Gusciora said Thursday in a statement.

U.S. Rep. John Lewis (D) said that Christie’s comments were a "big blunder."

"I just thought it was unbelievable, unreal," he said. "He’s a lawyer, governor and not to know that putting the issue of civil rights - segregation and racial discrimination in the American south - to a vote? We would have never made it during the 40s, the 50s or the 60s. Most of the governors except for a few of the states were outright segregationist. And most of these states in the old confederacy, people of color could not register to vote."

Despite being called a "segregationist," Christie recently nominated the first openly gay, black, GOP mayor to the New Jersey Supreme Court, EDGE reported. That justice, Bruce Harris, however, has said that he will recuse himself from cases that involve same-sex marriage because he has advocated for the issue. Harris says he supports civil unions but is against calling it a marriage.

Additionally, Sarah Palin (R) has gotten in on the name-calling when the former Alaskan governor said that Christie had his "panties in a wad" when he criticized Newt Gingrich.

"Here’s a host that asked Chris, ’Does Newt embarrass the party.’ I think he asked him twice, and there Chris played right into it and spewed that about Newt embarrassing the party," Palin said on the Fox Business Network. "Sometimes if your candidate loses in just one step along this path, as was the case when Romney lost to Newt the other night and of course, Romney is Chris Christie’s guy, you kind of get your panties in a wad and you may say things that you regret later. And I think that that’s what Chris Christie did."

Urban Dictionary gives this definition of numb nuts: "The metaphoric comparison of a useless un-inteligent person to useless sterile testicals."

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