Former New York Senator Hiram
Monserrate lost a special election in Queens Tuesday to regain his
Monserrate was expelled from the
chamber after he was convicted of assaulting his girlfriend, Karla
Gay rights activists, who say
Monserrate reneged on a promise to vote in favor of a gay marriage
bill, campaigned to derail his Senate bid and backed the campaign of
Democrat Jose R. Peralta, an assemblyman from Queens.
Soon after the December defeat of the
gay marriage bill in the New York Senate, gay activists formed the
political action committee Fight
Back New York, which calls for the ouster of anti-gay senators,
and recruited openly lesbian Sex and the City star Cynthia
Nixon as pitchwoman.
“You should be proud of this win,”
the group said in a statement. “Your targeted anger and your
ceaseless demand for equality paid off. This is our first clear
message to the remaining anti-equality Senators that there are
consequences to voting against equality.”
“Each and every one of the remaining
37 New York State Senators who voted 'no' to marriage equality –
Democrats and Republicans – will be fair game,” the group added.
Most voters, however, appeared more
concerned with Monserrate's character than his voting record on gay
rights. Monserrate “is not a good example for our children,”
Pedro Duran, 59, told the New York Times.
In the end, Peralta, who supports the
right of gay and lesbian couples to marry, trounced his rival. With
94 percent of the vote counted, Peralta was leading with 66% of the
vote to 27%.