New York's top court has refused to
hear an appeal challenging the state's gay marriage law, which
lawmakers approved in 2011.
The Court of Appeals on Tuesday denied
the request by New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms. The court
did not give a reason for its decision.
The evangelical group claimed that the
law's adoption was illegal.
The New York Senate “violated the
state's Open Meeting Law by closing off the Senate galleries and
lobby; and by holding closed door meetings with Mayor [Michael]
Bloomberg and others who backed the law,” the New York Daily
News earlier reported.
The group, which is helmed by Rev.
Jason J. McGuire, also claimed that Governor Andrew Cuomo illegally
ignored a three-day waiting period and accuses proponents of the law,
including Bloomberg, of bribing lawmakers for their votes.
“With the Court's decision, same-sex
couples no longer have to worry that their right to marry could be
legally challenged in this State,” Cuomo said in a statement. “The
freedom to marry in this State is secure for generations to come.”
Rev. Jason McGuire, executive director
of New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms, lamented the loss.
“Obviously we're disappointed in the
Court of Appeals decision, but I wouldn't say surprised,” he said.
“It's a pretty liberal-leaning court. Every time the people had
the chance to vote on the issue of marriage, they view it one way
[against gay marriage]. But when it comes before rogue legislatures
or the courts, they view it different.”
New York Attorney General Eric
Schneiderman, whose office defended the law in court, praised
“Today another barrier has been
overcome in the struggle for full equality for gay and lesbian New
Yorkers,” he said. “With this ruling by our state's highest
court, same sex couples can now have peace of mind that this legal
challenge to their marriages has been laid to rest.”