US President George W Bush used a fund raising speech this week to express opposition to same sex marriage.

It comes after the New jersey Supreme Court called for the state to give fairer rights to gays and lesbians.

Justice Barry Albin, who authored the 66 page majority ruling said unequal rights can no longer be tolerated, “[The] unequal dispensation of rights and benefits to committed same-sex partners can no longer be tolerated under our State Constitution.

“Our decision significantly advances the civil rights of gays and lesbians. We have decided that our State Constitution guarantees that every statutory right and benefit conferred to heterosexual couples through civil marriage must be made available to committed same-sex couples.”

But Mr Bush was less than impressed with the decision, “I believe marriage is a union between a man and a woman. And I believe it’s a sacred institution that is critical to the health of our society and the wellbeing of families, and it must be defended.”

It echoes his remarks made at the time of a Senate vote on the issue earlier this year.

The President was in Iowa to support a Republican colleague Jeff Lamberti, but according to the BBC chose to refer to his fellow republican as Dave.

Other Republican hopefuls however have shunned the oratorical skills of the president for their fund raising or campaign events. Bush is currently standing particularly low in the opinion polls, largely due to the ever growing disaster and human tragedy that is Iraq.

The ‘family values’ rhetoric could be the prefect smoke screen for the electorate.