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NJ asks for stay of judge’s gay-marriage ruling

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — Republican New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s administration is asking a judge to delay an order that the state must allow gay marriage until an appeal can be decided.

Tuesday’s request to Judge Mary Jacobson was expected.

The judge ruled last week the state was violating its constitution by denying same-sex marriage. She says state law is blocking couples from receiving federal benefits. The judge made the ruling effective Oct. 21.

The state attorney general’s office is appealing to a higher court.

The state’s lawyers say in their motion for a stay that if the judge’s ruling stands it could be a blow to the state’s ability to make its own laws.

Lawyers for the gay and lesbian couples suing for the right to marry have until Friday to respond.