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. Lee Clark

    GREAT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! So now, where are you CALIFORNIA?!?!?!?!?!!??!?!?!

    June 24, 2011 at 10:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • LuvnJesus

      Hopefully, still in the closet or the bedroom, but not in our legal system!

      June 24, 2011 at 11:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • James Madison

      ... like catholic priests

      June 24, 2011 at 11:05 pm | Report abuse |
  2. John

    Congrats NY!!!

    Everybody also thank Massachusetts for starting the turn around (btw, where my sister married here partner of 18 years soon after the law was passed here)

    June 24, 2011 at 10:47 pm | Report abuse |

    I'm feeling very, very proud to be a New Yorker right now! THANK YOU FOR ENSURING EQUALITY FOR ALL NEW YORKERS!! History will look back upon this day proudly!!

    June 24, 2011 at 10:47 pm | Report abuse |
  4. liza

    Yay NY....its about time!!!..these bible thumpers have too much time and hate. Hmm I wonder what part of the bible says its ok to be hateful and play good?????

    June 24, 2011 at 10:47 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Granger

    once again – the repubs failed us... the moral compass just got tossed out the window and all hell is going to break out.

    June 24, 2011 at 10:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • PM

      You're right – the proof is that you're out of your cage.

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

      oh no!!!! the rapture!!!! ahhhhhh!!!!!

      take your wizard-praising butt to the middle east if you're going to be that dopey about what you THINK everyone's moral compass should be

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

      How exactly is all hell going to break out? Two people, regardless of who they are, are simply being recognized as being in a legal union. How is that going to cause any problems? Does the idea of Mrs. & Mrs. Johnson scare you? Will they steal your pets in the night now that they are legally recognized as married? Stop worrying about something that isn't a problem and start focusing on real problems and come up with some solutions while you're at it.

      June 24, 2011 at 10:52 pm | Report abuse |

      Granger.....they've been "failing us" for years.......the country, that is! They've screwed the middle class, endorse torture, got us into 3 wars that have bankrupted the country, embarrassed us beyond definition in the international community....ahh...the list goes on and on and on. This is first good thing I've seen Repubs. do in the past 25 years! Get over it......what does it matter who marries whom in your little world?

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

      Moral Compass of Republicans wavers more than a weather vane in variable winds.

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

      First you should understand it is New York. the Republicans are nothing but RINO's. So this is not a big deal and every one knew it was coming. And we all should face the facts this is done in liberal states and done by legislation. Do you notice they never allow voters to vote on these type of Bills? I think they know if you let the people decide they will vote it down every time!

      June 24, 2011 at 10:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • James Madison

      LOL... your "repubs" failed you starting with Bush...

      June 24, 2011 at 11:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • kevin

      So you feel gays shouldn't have driver's licenses and business licenses either. Or you feel hetero atheists shouldn't be married because they fail the religious test of marriage which also excludes getting married by the justice of the peace and in wedding chapels in Vegas because God/Jesus isn't mentioned in those marriage ceremonies.

      One way or another anyone against gay marriage is going to lose simple reasonable arguments. Last argument of which is trying to define exactly who is a man and who is a woman.

      June 24, 2011 at 11:12 pm | Report abuse |
  6. jai001

    I have said for years that soon or later marriage equality will be the nationwide law. It may take many more years but it will happen.

    June 24, 2011 at 10:47 pm | Report abuse |
  7. fairman97

    i think instead of calling gay married couples married we should call them "butt buddies" and instead of saying they are getting married we should say they are getting "butt buddied"

    June 24, 2011 at 10:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • tom

      how does that work again with two ladies??? Stop watching male gay p o r n all night and come out of the closet, we can help you!

      June 24, 2011 at 11:04 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Jason

    What a sad day in America. For once I'm glad I live in Utah, it won't even be a real debate for years, as conservitive as this state is.

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

      Trust me, we New Yorkers are glad you live in Utah, too.

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

      haha @ Paul

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

      I think you spell that "C-O-N-S-E-R-V-A-T-I-V-E", Mr. Webster. Oh, I forgot – you live in Utah. You can always get one of your dozen sister wives to check your spelling. Cuz wee all NO that readin' crap is for wumen and sisseez.

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

      Mmmm.. utah... now THERE's a real state... YEE-HAW... wife #8 tonight!!!

      June 24, 2011 at 11:07 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Pat

    Don't get too excited. It's such a small step

    June 24, 2011 at 10:48 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Democrat not for Gay so called rights

    Sad day for America.....Leave it up to the Churches not the Government !

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

      If we left it up to the churches, we'd have ALL the priests raping little boys... PLEEEEZEEEE

      June 24, 2011 at 11:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • onewayanus

      @james madison
      Is that next for the gays? It falls into deviant behaviour as well!

      June 26, 2011 at 11:56 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Rorison Meadows

    Yeah!!!!!! Great news!!!! Finally another state that makes the logical decision, allowing anyone to get married who wants to.

    But let's not get away from the fact that New York still sucks. The taxes and economy are terrible.

    June 24, 2011 at 10:48 pm | Report abuse |
  12. mbolles

    Why is cnn showing a trial that no one cares about when real things are happening in this country?

    June 24, 2011 at 10:48 pm | Report abuse |
  13. skidrogue

    WOW!!! I wish I were there. I'm soooo proud of the Empire State. Thank you, New York.

    June 24, 2011 at 10:48 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Ryan

    Because you're an illogical fool and a bigot.

    Sorry you're losing and equality and fairness are winning. I hope you're not still sore over the Civil Rights Movement in the 60s.

    June 24, 2011 at 10:48 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Paul NYC

    Conservatives and religious nuts are now free to leave NYS for the greener pastures of the Deep South where their views are acceptable.

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

      time to change nyc to ampsterdam, or hampsteruptheazz?

      June 26, 2011 at 11:57 pm | Report abuse |
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