Briefly noted

The New Jersey state senate has voted down a bill to legalize same-sex marriage, prompting a promise from gay-rights advocates to take their campaign to the courts. The final tally on January 7 was 20–14 with three abstentions. It reflected a dramatic shift in the state’s political landscape since gay-marriage supporter Gov. Jon Corzine lost his bid for reelection to Republican Chris Christie in November. Christie came out strongly against the bill, emboldening opponents of same-sex marriage and drawing undecided senators to the Republican fold.