Chris Christie Rejects Rights of Conscience

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (photo credit: Gage Skidmore)
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (photo credit: Gage Skidmore)

New Jersey Governor, and presidential hopeful, Chris Christie issued a disappointing statement yesterday to those hoping he would protect government employees with religious objections to gay marriage:

“I think for folks who are in the government world, they kind of have to do their job, whether you agree with the law or you don’t,” Christie told reporters following a town hall at a lakeside home, noting there are laws that he enforces as governor that he disagrees with. “I’m sure there are individual circumstances that might merit some examination,” he added, “but none that come immediately to mind for me.”

“You took the job and you took the oath,” he said. “When you go back and re-read the oath it doesn’t give you an out. You have to do it.”

Christie’s rejection of religious freedom stands in stark contrast to other candidates who have argued for stronger religious protections, including even the few candidates who have advocated accepting the Supreme Court’s marriage ruling like Lindsey Graham.

Nick Arnold is a researcher for American Principles in Action.