After a week of increasing momentum on
a gay marriage bill in New York, Republican Senate leaders announced
Friday they're punting a vote on the issue until next week.
Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos
emerged from a closed-door meeting with Governor Andrew Cuomo to say
that there would be no vote on the proposed legislation today, YNN
Skelos said the governor was open to
listening to the concerns of Republicans, who fear the bill could
open religious institutions to lawsuits.
“This has been a very complicated
year in terms of the issues that we've addressed and I've found the
governor from the very beginning starting with the budget process has
always had an open ear and is flexible in terms of the suggestions I
give or the speaker gives,” Skelos said.
The Republican added that there would
be no Sunday session, pushing debate for marriage equality back to
Monday, the final day of the legislative session. However, talk of a
special session has already emerged.
The drama began to unfurl on Tuesday
when Cuomo officially introduced his promised gay marriage bill. The
Assembly wasted no time in approving the governor's plan the
following day. Proponents – and opponents – also weighed in
throughout the week, including actress
Cynthia Nixon and New
York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Former Giants wide receiver
Tyree struck a nerve when he said the legislation would lead to
anarchy, while pop singer Lady
Gaga called on her 11 million twitter followers to join the fight.
Timothy M. Dolan, the Roman Catholic
archbishop of New York, on Friday again reiterated his opposition to
the legislation, which he called an “ominous threat” to society
and “a violation of what we consider the natural law that's
embedded in every man and woman.”
Dolan called proponents “well oiled”
and “well financed” during
a radio appearance, then added: “It's not a done deal. There
is a good chance that this is not going to pass this year.”
Two Senate Republicans have so far
endorsed the measure – deadlocking the bill with a 31-31 vote –
and others say they remain undecided.