Friday, April 17, 2009

Battle Brewing Over NY Same-Sex Marriage Bill

Yesterday, New York Gov. David Paterson announced he would introduce legislation to legalize same-sex marriage in New York, a bill that is identical to the 2007 resolution that passed the House but failed in the Senate.

This new legislation is expected to have a repeat success in the House but Democrats have a slim majority in the Senate 32-30 with several Democrats voicing opposition, and supporters of the bill are not sure if they're ready to take it on. At yesterday's press conference, the governor conceded that out of 36,980 bills introduced during his own 21-year career as a senator, legislators were only unsure of the vote outcome in three cases.

One Democratic senator is the most vociferous - Senator Ruben Diaz, Sr., a Pentecostal minister and ardent foe to all things LGBT. Yesterday, he called on the New York Hispanic Clergy Organization to meet, the same day that the bill was introduced to immediately plan their strategy against the bill. Now he plans to hold a rally in May where he will call for the ouster of Governor David Paterson, reports WNYC-FM:
"Diaz says Paterson insulted all people of faith by introducing the bill so close to major holidays and the installation of a new catholic archbishop. Diaz is planning a rally next month when he'll call for Paterson's ouster.

"'You could put it down, during the month of May, we will bring out thousands and thousands of Hispanic evangelical christians in the city of New York to ask Governor Paterson to step aside,' said Diaz, Sr., a Democrat who represents the Bronx."
The latest Quinnipiac University poll, which was taken before the marriage equality announcement, showed that Paterson's approval ratings are at record lows for a New York governor. Good As You is also pointing out the falsehoods that Tony Perkins of the anti-gay Family Research Council are using on another Quinnipiac University poll claiming that 59% of New Yorkers are against same-sex marriage.


Empire State Pride Agenda is planning a major effort to ask non-committal and opposed senators to change their position. It will occur on April 28, gathering thousands of gay and lesbian constituents will travel to Albany, the state capitol, to lobby their legislators.

If you're not able to go, you can still get involved by writing your legislators and asking them to support the same-sex marriage bill.

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