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No Common Ground for Christie and Buono on Social Issues, Policies

“He’s sacrificing the safety of our children by vetoing commonsense gun laws just to cater to the Republican right and the NRA (National Rifle Association) because they play big in Republican presidential primaries,” she said.

His actions won Christie praise from the NRA’s New Jersey affiliate, the Association of New Jersey Rifle and Pistol Clubs.

"After seven months of intense battle over misguided legislation that won't stop another crime or prevent another tragedy, we are grateful that Gov. Christie has finally ended the discussion on the worst of the bills by tossing them onto the scrap heap where they belong," said ANJRPC Executive Director Scott Bach in a statement posted on the group’s website. "These vetoes put gun-banning politicians on notice that exploiting tragedy to advance an agenda against legal gun owners, instead of punishing violent criminals, will not be entertained."

Buono had voted for that bill and also said she would reduce the maximum capacity of ammunition magazines from 15 to 10 bullets. Citing Sandy Hook and other recent mass shootings in Tucson, AZ, and Aurora, CO, Buono said, “If these magazines had been smaller, lives could have been saved.”

She also supports requiring that all sales of ammunition be face to face, as all gun sales are required to be. That would make it illegal to use the mail, Internet or telephone to conduct ammunition sales. That provision was part of S-2723, which Christie vetoed.

Buono’s full position paper on gun violence is posted online.

Had the state Supreme Court not declined to stay a lower court ruling that ordered same-sex marriages to begin last Monday, and indicated it would likely uphold that ruling early next year, the issue might be more important in this campaign.

Still, some argue, there are some fine points to work out regarding same sex marriage in the state. Advocates would prefer to see it codified, rather than have the authority for allowing the unions rest with a Superior Court decision.

The two major candidates’ positions on the issue could not be clearer: Buono supports same-sex marriages and Christie does not. The governor conditionally vetoed a bill that would have written gay marriage into state law, saying he wanted the issue put up as a question before voters. His administration tried to stop the courts from ordering that same sex unions occur, although he did drop his administration’s appeal when the Supreme Court indicated he would likely lose.

During the second debate, Christie stated his personal beliefs about marriage would not change even if one of his children told him he was gay and wanted to marry his partner.

Stating he would first hug his child and express his love for the child, Christie said, “I would also tell them that dad believes that marriage is between one man and one woman. My children understand there are going to be differences of opinion in our house and in houses all across the state of New Jersey. I support the 2,000-year old definition. They would understand that their father loves them.”

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