[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/12/09/art.springsteen.gi.jpg caption="A gay marriage bill that's up for a crucial vote Thursday in New Jersey has the backing of 'the Boss.'"](CNN) - A gay marriage bill that's up for a crucial vote Thursday in New Jersey has the backing of "the Boss."
Rock legend Bruce Springsteen say he supports the legislation, which would legalize same sex marriages in the Garden State. On his Web site, the New Jersey born Springsteen says he's "always spoken out for the rights of same-sex couples," adding that he urges "those who support equal treatment for our gay and lesbian brothers and sisters to let their voices be heard now."
The New Jersey state Senate is expected to vote on the bill Thursday. It passed through the state Senate's Judiciary Committee earlier this week by one vote. Democrats concede the measure may fall short of the 21 votes needed to pass the state Senate. The state Assembly hasn't considered the bill yet.
The timing is important since Republican Gov.-elect Chris Christie, who takes office next month, says he would veto the bill. The man Christie beat in last month's election, out-going Democratic Gov. Jon Corzine, says he would sign the bill if it reaches his desk before he leaves office.
Last week, New York's state Senate defeated a bill that would legalize same-sex marriages. The legislation had already passed the state Assembly. New York Gov. David Paterson said he would have immediately signed the bill if it had made it to his office.
Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Hampshire, Vermont and Iowa are currently the only states that legally allow same-sex marriages. Earlier this year, lawmakers in Maine approved legalized gay marriages. But voters in Maine last month passed a referendum to overturn the new law. A vote last week by the District of Columbia's city council moved Washington, D.C. one step closer to legalizing same sex marriages.
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