NYDN: ‘The battle over same-sex marriage is about to heat up again in the state Senate’

The first line of the article in today’s New York Daily News says it all. The battle for marriage is on in New York:

The battle over same-sex marriage is about to heat up again in the state Senate.

Sen. Thomas Duane (D-Manhattan), the Senate’s biggest booster of gay marriage, said he’ll introduce legislation “within weeks” to legalize same-sex marriage – and will push for a vote before the end of June.

“I think everyone is aware that we have to make the lives of New Yorkers better in every way – economically, as well as to provide equality to New York families,” Duane said Monday.

Although a similar bill was soundly defeated in the Senate in 2009, Duane and other supporters believe Gov. Cuomo’s support can finally tilt the political landscape.

Cuomo, whose favorable rating reached a soaring 70% in this week’s Siena poll, called for the legalization of gay marriage in his State of the State address earlier this month.

“I think the governor is starting in a strong political place with the people on his side and the wind at his back,” said Ross Levi, executive director of the Empire State Pride Agenda.

“That is helpful.”

Sen. Thomas Duane (D-Manhattan), the Senate’s biggest booster of gay marriage, said he’ll introduce legislation “within weeks” to legalize same-sex marriage – and will push for a vote before the end of June.

“I think everyone is aware that we have to make the lives of New Yorkers better in every way – economically, as well as to provide equality to New York families,” Duane said Monday.

Although a similar bill was soundly defeated in the Senate in 2009, Duane and other supporters believe Gov. Cuomo’s support can finally tilt the political landscape.

Cuomo, whose favorable rating reached a soaring 70% in this week’s Siena poll, called for the legalization of gay marriage in his State of the State address earlier this month.

Marriage equality legislation, sponsored by Assemblyman Danny O’Donnell, has passed twice in the New York Assembly. The bill failed in the State Senate on December 2, 2009 by a vote of 38 – 24. Republicans now control the Senate (Again. The GOP controlled the Senate for decades until the 2009-2010 session.) But, the GOP leader won’t prevent a vote on the bill, we’re told:

Scott Reif, a spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos (R-Nassau), said his boss opposes gay marriage, but would not block the measure from coming up for a vote.

This one is going to be intense. Having a supportive Governor with strong polling numbers on our side should help.

And, thanks to Fight Back NY, a lot of the state’s politicians know there’s a political price to pay for opposing equality.


On October 27, 2010, Joe was one of five bloggers who interviewed President Obama. Joe is a DC-based political consultant with over twenty-five years of experience at both the state and federal level. Joe has managed political operations and legislative efforts for both candidates and issues-based organizations. For seven years, he was the Director of State Legislation at Handgun Control, Inc. He served as that organization's first Political Director during the 2000 cycle. Joe is a graduate of the University of Maine School of Law. In addition, he has a Masters in Public Administration from Lehigh University and received his B.A. from the University of New Hampshire. Joe also has a fun dog, Petey, a worthy successor to Boomer, who got Joe through eight years of Bush and Cheney. Joe likes to think he is a world class athlete having finished the 2005 Chicago Marathon in the time of 4:10. He has completed six other marathons as well -- and is still determined to break the four hour mark.

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