Gay Marriage Coming To New York
That’s right. Not civil unions. Marriage.
Gov. Eliot Spitzer will introduce a bill in the coming weeks to legalize same-sex marriage in New York, his spokeswoman said Friday, a move that would propel New York to the forefront of one of the most contentious issues in politics.
Though he has long voiced support for same-sex marriage and promised during his campaign last year to introduce legislation to legalize it, Mr. Spitzer did not mention the issue in his State of the State speech in January or in remarks a week ago outlining his priorities for the remainder of the legislative session, which ends June 21.
But does it have a shot?
Even among lawmakers who say they favor the legislation, there is some division over the best strategy to get it passed. Two legislators from Manhattan, State Senator Thomas K. Duane and Assemblyman Richard N. Gottfried, both Democrats, have tried for several years to shepherd a gay-marriage bill through the Legislature and are trying again this year. That bill has at least 14 sponsors in the Senate and 42 in the Assembly.
If Mr. Spitzer does propose a bill, it is unclear how much muscle he will be willing ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â‚¬? or able ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â‚¬? to put behind it. The priorities he has outlined ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â‚¬? such as overhauling the stateÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s campaign finance laws and introducing a constitutional amendment to require nonpartisan legislative redistricting ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â‚¬? already pose a considerable challenge. That would leave Mr. Spitzer with little political bandwidth that would allow him to build support for another controversial bill.
Given these political realities, the question that comes to my mind: is Spitzer putting this out there to fail?
Also, I’m sure the Democratic candidates for President are just tickled pink about Spitzer introducing this. Especially Hillary.