Same-Gender Marriage Goes Down To Legislative Wire In New York


ny-state-senate1Supporters and opponents of same-gender marriage made 11th-hour appeals on Sunday as state lawmakers weighed a vote on making New York the sixth state – and the most populous – to legalize same-gender marriage.

The measure that would make same-gender marriage legal, introduced by Governor Andrew Cuomo, a Democrat and strong advocate, is currently one vote shy of passage in the state Senate.

The state Assembly approved the bill by a wide margin last week and today is the last day of the legislative session before summer recess.

Lawmakers in Albany hurries back to the state capitol where the Marriage Equality Act could be passed before New York State’s legislative session ends at 11:59 p.m. tonight.

Aides for the Senate Republicans reportedly met over the weekend, trying to iron out the language of the controversial legislation. Only one more Republican vote is needed for Senate passage of the bill.

Legalizing same-sex marriage has been stalled since last week, when it passed the State Assembly in 80-63 vote. Hundreds of same-gender rights activists rallied throughout Manhattan Sunday to push for progress on the bill.

New York Archbishop Timothy Dolan addressed the same-gender marriage issue on Sunday.

“I know we’re sort of the David here, up against a Goliath, but we’re not going to give up. That’s what this request for prayers was all about,” Dolan said.

Dolan again stated the belief of the Catholic Church that marriage is defined by a union between a man and a woman.

“Any presumption to redefine that sacred vocabulary, I’m afraid, is at our common peril,” Dolan said.

“One has to wonder why the proponents of this radical redefinition, who claim overwhelming popular support, would not consider” a referendum “on such a drastic departure from traditional values?” Dolan wrote on his blog. 

Recent polls show statewide support for same-gender marriage.

Dolan wrote that the “government presumes to redefine” such sacred words as father, mother, husband and wife “at the peril of the common good.”

In Albany, Senate Majority Leader Republican Dean Skelos has said the bill as written has prompted concerns over its religious clauses and exemptions.

The bill does not compel any member of the clergy to conduct same-gender marriages, but some Republican lawmakers are concerned the legal protection is not strong enough.

Skelos said Cuomo has indicated he was open to including more specific exemptions for religious groups.

The governor has lobbied for passage and said he remains cautiously optimistic the bill will come to a vote and pass.

The state-by-state battle over same-gender marriage has become a contentious U.S. social issue ahead of the 2012 presidential and congressional elections.

Five states – Massachusetts, Connecticut, Iowa, New Hampshire and Vermont – and the District of Columbia allow same-gender marriage, while four states have civil unions. Same-gender marriage is specifically banned in 39 states.

{By Noam Newscenter/The Associated Press contributed to this report}


  1. “Recent polls show statewide support for same-gender marriage.”

    Why do you post such propaganda? It is known that the results of polls can be influenced by how the questions are phrased, for example. If they want to get that result, they phrase the question in a non threatening way. Don’t be fooled!

    I am also mocheh that lately you have stopped using the word toeivah to describe this, substituting the innocuos sounding ‘same gender marriage’. I thought this was a Torah website, unlike some others. Toeiva it is and toeiva is what it should be called!

  2. Call Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos and tell the one who answers that you do not want the bill to come to the floor for a vote. His number is 518-455-3717.
    In addition, call your local State Senator and tell him you that are against the bill. Tell him that if he votes for the bill there will be negative ramifications in the next election. you can find out who your senator is by goging to:


    The phone number of Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos is 518-455-3171.

    (I just called, and the secretary told me that Mr. Skelos IS against the bill.)

  4. #4 (cohen):

    Actually, only 38.

    50×¾=37.5 (rounded up to 38)

    We also need the votes of 290 Representatives (435×?=290) and 67 Senators (100×?=66.667).

    You think we can muster it?