New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, New
York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and City Council Speaker Christine
Quinn celebrated passage of a gay marriage law in New York by
attending New York City's Gay Pride Parade on Sunday.
On Friday, Cuomo's proposed legislation
cleared its final hurdle, the Senate, with four Republicans joining
all but one Democrat, Ruben Diaz Sr. of the Bronx. The governor
quickly signed the bill into law and gay and lesbian couples will be
able to marry in the Empire State next month.
The first-term Democratic governor
spearheaded the effort. He won over two fence-sitting Republicans,
Senators Mark Grisanti and Stephen Saland, by negotiating with the
Senate GOP caucus on protections for religious groups.
Mayor Bloomberg, a Republican turned
independent, was in Albany last week to lend a hand. He met
privately with lawmakers and urged them to vote for the bill. Last
delivered a major speech in support of marriage equality.
Quinn, who is openly lesbian, had also
campaigned in favor of the law, often appearing with Bloomberg at
various rallies. Quinn and her partner of 10 years, lawyer Kim
Catullo, plan to wed next spring.
The win in New York comes after years
of lobbying – the Assembly first approved the bill in 2007 – and
before Cuomo signed the bill into law, he thanked the efforts of his
predecessor, Governor David Paterson.
At the parade, Cuomo said this year's
event was “extra special.”
“It is time for marriage equality all
across this country,” Cuomo told jubilant supporters. “New York
for many, many years has served as the progressive beacon for this
country. And passing marriage equality I think advances the entire
discussion in terms of social justice. And I am so proud and honored
to be the governor of this state signing this law into effect.”