A tense moment at the marriage equality hearing

TRENTON – State Sen. Gerald Cardinale (R-Demarest) just had words with Sen. Nia Gill (D-Montclair) over his questioning of a witness.

After attorney Thomas Hoff Prol, an associate with the influential law firm Scarinci Hollenbeck an advocate of marriage equality, referenced the state’s Civil Union Review Commission’s findings in support of his point, Cardinale tried to undercut the legitimacy of the commission’s report.

“Can you with a straight face… that the membership was unbiased?” said Cardinale

After Hoff Prollsaid yes, and noted that the commission was set up by the legislature, Cardinale said that “someone once told me that [law school] was three years of learning to lie effectively, but you aren’t lying effectively.”

That drew gasps from the audience and a gentle admonishment from Gill.

“We may disagree, but we don’t have to be disagreeable,” she told Cardinale.

Then Gill turned to Proll.

“You’re not a liar, and we apologize,” she said.

A tense moment at the marriage equality hearing