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05/12/2009

NY's 1st hurdle = easy clear

by Jeremy Hooper

NY-flag89-52 with five Republicans on board:

New York Assembly Passes Gay Marriage Bill [NY Times]

Now on to the Senate; now out with the idea that it's a "sin, it." Unfortunately we have Ruben Diaz to contend with in both of those fights.

**SEE ALSO: The Empire State Pride Agenda weighs in:

“Thanks to the Assembly’s leadership on this issue, we are one step away from winning marriage equality in New York,” said Empire State Pride Agenda Executive Director Alan Van Capelle. “This second vote on the marriage bill in the Assembly won greater support than it did in 2007, with more Democrats and Republicans standing up to protect all New York families. I want to thank Assemblyman Danny O’Donnell for once again leading this bill through his chamber and so eloquently arguing for the need to provide same-sex couples with the 1,324 rights and protections that come with a New York State marriage license. We also thank the thousands of New Yorkers who had conversations with their Assemblymembers—in their districts and in Albany—and conveyed to them the importance of this issue.”

The Pride Agenda attributes the increased margin of victory in the Assembly to two main factors: greater understanding by legislators that only civil marriage and not any other legal mechanism provides equality for same-sex couples and recognition by legislators that support for marriage equality is not politically toxic at the ballot box.

“Several legislators who are now supporters but weren’t earlier have told me their evolution on this issue is due to having a much better understanding that only a civil marriage license provides equality for our families,” said Van Capelle. “Legislators also saw that a vote for marriage equality in 2007 had absolutely no impact on who won or lost last November.”

Legalizing marriage for same-sex couples is supported by Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver and Senate Majority Leader Malcolm Smith, as well as every statewide official, including Governor Paterson, Attorney General Andrew Cuomo, Comptroller Tom DiNapoli, U.S. Senators Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand. A recent Siena poll showed that, by a 14-point spread, the majority of New Yorkers support making marriage legal for same-sex couples (53% - 39%).

“The only remaining barrier to ending second-class status for gay and lesbian families in New York is now the State Senate,” said Van Capelle. “To every single member of the State Senate I say this: The landscape has shifted in New York. Do you want to be on the right side or the wrong side of history when the story is written about how marriage equality came to New York? Your grandchildren will want to know how you voted on this important human rights issue. This is a legacy vote.”

LGBT New Yorkers and allies from across the state, including the New York State AFL-CIO and nearly 500 clergy and lay leaders will be working to secure the needed votes in the State Senate to pass the marriage bill by the end of the legislative session.

“Our families cannot wait any longer,” said Van Capelle. “Now is the time for the State Senate to do what the rest of the state wants them to do, which is make marriage legal for all New York families.”
New York State Assembly Passes Marriage Equality Bill [ESPA]

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Yeah... well this from LCR...they helped too, they claim. blogcabin.net/?p=279

ALBANY, NEW YORK—Log Cabin Republicans of New York today applauded the Assembly Republicans who supported the passage of A07732, the bill that would grant equal marriage rights to same-sex couples in New York State. The bill picked up four more votes than it did in 2007 and passed by an overwhelming margin of 89-52, including the support of five Republicans. Republican Assemblymembers Janet Duprey, Joel Miller, Teresa Sayward, Dede Scozzafava and Fred Thiele all voted in favor of the bill. Duprey and Thiele previously voted against the bill and came on as new Republican cosponsors this year. In total, now 58 Republican state legislators across the Northeast have stood up for marriage equality—and zero have lost reelection.

“After voting against the same-sex marriage bill in 2007, I promised to study the issue with an open mind,” said Assemblywoman Janet Duprey (R-Peru). “I have met with dozens of constituents, received a multitude of phone calls, e-mails and letters and read books and position papers on both sides of the argument. I have without reservation come to the conclusion that all people regardless of sexual orientation should be treated equally, and I am pleased to support this civil rights issue.”

“I urge my Senate colleagues to vote YES on the marriage equality bill,” said Assemblywoman Teresa Sayward (R-Willsboro). “This issue is one that a majority of New Yorkers support—and that number is growing. Evidence from science, psychology, history, genetic medicine, the pediatric society and personal experience lead us to the truth. Being gay or lesbian is not a sickness and it is not a sin. To discriminate against race, religion or sexual orientation is not only unjust, it’s un-American.”

“This is America,” said Assemblyman Joel Miller (R-Poughkeepsie) during the debate. “There is no room for discrimination of any kind. We should celebrate the fact that we have advanced to the point where we cannot accept legal discrimination against anyone. I very strongly support this bill, and I urge others to support it as well.”

I posted the whole quote, because these people sound so much more reasonable than Obama does on ANY GLBT problem... Heck I may become a Republican! not.

Posted by: LOrion | May 13, 2009 11:13:57 AM

If this passes the Senate, I will send Representative O'Donnell and Senator Duane each a bottle of Courvoisier in thank-you.

Go Empire State!

Posted by: Mariya | May 13, 2009 12:22:42 PM

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