New York Senate approves same-sex marriage
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo addresses the press and public after signing the state's same-sex marriage bill into law.
June 24th, 2011
10:22 PM ET

New York Senate approves same-sex marriage

[Update 4:52 a.m.] New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed the state's marriage equality bill hours after it passed the Republican-controlled Senate on Friday night, making it the sixth state in the nation to legalize same-sex marriage. Cuomo signed the bill into law after the legislature cleared the way to legalize same-sex marriage with a 33-29 vote, the first time a state Senate with a Republican majority has approved such a bill.

[Original post 11:21 p.m.] New York legislators cleared the last major hurdle to legalize same-sex marriage Friday when the state Senate followed the Assembly's lead in approving legislation to do so.

Earlier in the day, the Assembly passed a version of the bill that included an amendment about religious institutions. The Friday night vote in the Senate means the legislation's fate is now in the hands of Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who proposed it.

The Senate vote came after lawmakers agreed on an amendment that would help protect religious institutions from potential lawsuits, Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos said.Demonstrators have gathered for days in Albany as state lawmakers pored over the details of the bill, which would help make New York the nation's sixth and largest state to legalize same-sex marriage.

The vote on the marriage measure, which the state Assembly passed June 15, was stalled in part by Republican concerns over protections for religious institutions against the potential for litigation.

Cuomo says the bill would grant same-sex couples equal rights to marry "as well as hundreds of rights, benefits and protections that are currently limited to married couples of the opposite sex."

Currently, five states - Massachusetts, Connecticut, Iowa, Vermont and New Hampshire - and the District of Columbia grant same-sex marriage licenses.

The passage of same-sex marriage laws faced a daunting history in the New York state legislature.

The Senate rejected a bill to legalize same-sex marriage in 2009 and has blocked the last three attempts by the state's lower house to get the proposed legislation signed into law.

Although New York currently does not grant same-sex marriages, a 2008 appellate court ruling upheld the right of couples to have their same-sex marriages recognized if they are performed elsewhere.


Filed under: New York • Same-sex marriage
soundoff (604 Responses)
  1. Michael

    @Bacon It is not a concession to the church, it is a protection of freedom for minorities.
    Suppose a group of guys want to play basketball after work. Now someone sues you because you don't have any girls in the group. You'd say that's not fair, this was just me and some friends. If the girls want to play, let them make their own group. Private groups can and should be allowed to discriminate. The government should not be imposing uniformity on all groups.

    June 24, 2011 at 10:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • JRH

      So you're in favor of segregation then? It's the *same thing*. We should keep the darkies in their place, eh? These uppity gays are getting too big for their britches, aren't they? In case you hadn't noticed, this is the 21st Century.

      June 24, 2011 at 10:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • ummmreally?

      Since when is the STATE private? They asked to be married under the eyes of the STATE (public fyi) not from any church (there's the private group/s you're referring to). Ignorance shadows every facet of the mind, doesn't it?

      June 24, 2011 at 10:49 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Jameson

    I honestly thought it wouldn't pass. Congrats New York!

    June 24, 2011 at 10:40 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Seraphimo

    You cannot marry your neighbor's Boston Terrier, because that dog will not stoop so low as to marry someone like you!

    June 24, 2011 at 10:40 pm | Report abuse |
  4. LND

    When your Boston Terrier can consent to marriage I will support your right to marry.

    June 24, 2011 at 10:40 pm | Report abuse |
  5. dani

    This is nonesense!!

    June 24, 2011 at 10:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mike

      Your bigotry is nonsense.

      June 24, 2011 at 10:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • PM

      This is GREAT!!

      June 24, 2011 at 10:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • Leah

      This is Sparta!!!!!!!

      June 25, 2011 at 12:35 am | Report abuse |
  6. joe

    I have always wanted to visit New York, now I want to live there!!! Congrats!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    June 24, 2011 at 10:40 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Ryan

    Another step closer to nation-wide legality. Congrats to New York lawmakers. Hopefully in the coming years Texas will wise up and do the same.

    June 24, 2011 at 10:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • Juan

      Wise up???? Yeah, right

      June 24, 2011 at 10:46 pm | Report abuse |
  8. John

    Your terrier can't give consent. Your gay partner (if you have one) can.

    June 24, 2011 at 10:40 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Jeff

    6 States down 44 to go. Hopefully Pennsylvania will be next!

    June 24, 2011 at 10:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rizzo

      I couldn't agree with you more!

      June 24, 2011 at 10:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Area Man

      Oh happy day! Victory beers all around! The times...they are a changin'!

      June 24, 2011 at 10:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • Traci

      things are changing for the worse, too bad politicians are worried about the vote then what their constiuents care about.

      June 26, 2011 at 11:18 pm | Report abuse |
  10. BRod

    Nothing surprises me anymore in America.

    June 24, 2011 at 10:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mic

      Not even the harsh and brutal beatings and bullying of gays?

      June 24, 2011 at 10:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • Isaac

      No that's ok for ignorant fools like him Mic... apparently they deserve it for being who they are I guess

      June 24, 2011 at 10:46 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Sarah

    It's about time, New York. I'm so proud! I love living here.

    June 24, 2011 at 10:41 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Isaac

    Hooray for human progress!!! As usual the ignorant 15th century minded brainwashed bible thumpers will have to be dragged kicking and screaming into reality and current times but that's nothing out of the ordinary.... there's nothing in the last several hundred years they HAVEN'T been wrong about.

    June 24, 2011 at 10:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • mk2

      The last great shiny object that keeps the GOP from actually fixing the country and saving it from brain dead liberals. It is a great day and hopefully all other states pass it as well and then abortion is next , and then the liberal party becomes extinct because all that is left is basic common fiscal sense for the GOP . I am a conservative and I can not possibly applaud new york harder than I am right now.

      June 24, 2011 at 10:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • Isaac

      you mean the fiscal sense that gives tax breaks to billionaires and screws the middle class?... the same fiscal common sense that has ran a deficit under every republican administration? The same fiscal common sense that was in practice for 6 years that took a surplus and turned it into the largest deficit ever?..... yeah let's hurry up and get back on that train.

      June 24, 2011 at 10:51 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Pete

    The beginning of the end....can this country get any worse???

    June 24, 2011 at 10:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • Isaac

      yep... idiots like you could be put in charge of stuff

      June 24, 2011 at 10:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • JonA

      It'll only get better once your sorry ass kicks the bucket.

      June 24, 2011 at 10:45 pm | Report abuse |
    • Greg

      No, because ignorant fools like you are living in it

      June 24, 2011 at 10:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Sadie

      You sad sack...we call this progress! I'm not gay and love the equality measures that NY has taken!

      June 24, 2011 at 10:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • Casey

      The U.S. is an AWESOME country. We are the land of the free and home of the brave, and our great country will only get better as more states stand up for equality for all people.

      June 24, 2011 at 10:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Turtle

      Pete... you could leave this country if you dont like it!

      June 24, 2011 at 10:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rizzo

      It sure can. But I am sure we will be able to fix that too once the GOP is soundly defeated in 2012 and the party is thrown into political irrelevance. Oh boy! More happy days are coming our way!

      June 24, 2011 at 10:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • Traci

      yes it can get worse, it will, and i'm looking to relocate to a moral country. Pretty soon it will be legal for someone to come over and molest my daughter, soon it will be legal for someone to come over and screw my dog and who knows what else, whatever the politicians think will help them get elected!!

      June 26, 2011 at 11:23 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Eddie

    Watched history in the making live! Congratulations to everyone in NY, that battle for equal rights are not over yet!

    June 24, 2011 at 10:41 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Joe

    No. You cant marry a terrier because a dog doesnt have the right to consent to a contract, unlike yourself, who clearly chose to marry a dog.

    June 24, 2011 at 10:41 pm | Report abuse |
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