- ‘Gay Jeans’ that fade into rainbow-colored denim created
- Divided court strikes down big porn award
- Jimmy Carter: Don’t hurt Russian people with sanctions
- Oldest ex-MLB player dies in Cuba, 2 days shy of 103rd birthday
- ‘Top Gun’ for drones: Squadrons of carrier-based killers have Navy’s approval
- Bill Clinton to endorse Charlie Rangel for re-election
- Pfc. Bradley Manning is now Pfc. Chelsea Manning: Court says so
- Secret base U.S. special forces used to train Libyans now under terrorist control: report
- 9th suspect in N.C. kidnapping turns self in to FBI
- L.A. sheriff admits to testing flyover spy program without notifying residents
N.Y. Senate stuck on gay marriage; rallies grow
ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Hundreds of protesters for and against gay marriage in New York chanted, sang and sought out TV cameras Monday while the state Senate again came to no resolution on the issue in a closed-door session that barely touched on the nationally divisive topic.
Two Republican senators said the gay marriage issue that has sharply focused the efforts of opponents and advocates was discussed only briefly in the caucus. Instead, Senate Republican leader Dean Skelos is negotiating with Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo on religious exemptions that could be enough for Republican senators — most of whom oppose gay marriage — to send the issue to the floor, where a bipartisan effort could pass it.
Democratic Sen. Ruben Diaz Sr., a Bronx minister who has led the opposition, said he now considers the legalization of same-sex marriage inevitable at some point in New York. He said, however, he’s unsure how the Senate will vote, noting Mr. Cuomo is exerting unprecedented pressure to get Republicans to approve his bill.
On Monday, groups led by clergy opposed to same-sex marriage sang hymns such as “Victory Is Mine” and prayed in small circles while pro-same-sex-marriage advocates countered with “God Bless America” and “This Little Light of Mine” and lined the halls and parlor outside the Senate chamber.
State troopers were called to the Senate chamber floor as the two groups started to merge and talk with each other, but there was no escalation in the jammed marble hallways that turned stifling hot from the people and TV cameras. Most were respectful of one another and kept to their own groups.
“This is not about religion, this is about civil rights,” Sharon Baum of New York City said.
She soon was confronted by a woman opposed to gay marriage.
“If this passes, we will become Sodom and Gomorrah,” said 80-year-old Ginny Winn of Delmar, N.Y., in Albany County.
“God says, ‘No’!” chanted one side, as pro-gay-marriage advocates, led by their clergy, intoned, “God is love!”
The gay marriage bill is now part of the usual horse-trading of issues behind closed doors that is common at the close of session for the New York Legislature. That means the emotional issue is tied to such common, but important, measures as continuing New York City’s rent control law and a statewide property tax cap, said the senators who spoke on the condition of anonymity because there was no official statement from the Republican majority.
Susan Lerner of the good-government group Common Cause said the level of professional and grass-roots lobbying appears unmatched in New York since the abortion and reproductive rights battles of the 1970s.
New York’s vote is pivotal in the national question over same-sex marriage, an effort that largely stalled in the same room two years ago when the Senate voted it down. Since then, efforts have failed in New Jersey, Rhode Island and Maryland. Advocates hope a “yes” vote in New York, the nation’s third-most populous state, will jump-start the effort.
The Rev. William Mayhew of Millerton, N.Y., said children aren’t given the support they need in a gay household.
“They are creating another category of civil rights,” Mr. Mayhew said. “American will suffer!”
TWT Video Picks
By Andrew P. Napolitano
Obama's veil of secrecy is pierced
- 'Top Gun' for drones: Squadrons of carrier-based killers have Navy's approval
- Pentagon plans to replace flight crews with 'full-time' robots
- Kansas will nullify local regulation of guns
- Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy hailed as patriot, ripped as lawless deadbeat
- America is an oligarchy, not a democracy or republic, university study finds
- Opposition rising to Colorado gun control laws
- CARSON: When government looks more like foe than friend
- Paul Ryan to meet with black lawmakers after 'inner cities' flap
- Georgia's new carry law a big win for gun rights
- Tactical advantage: Russian military shows off impressive new gear
Top 10 handguns in the U.S.
Celebrity deaths in 2014