After a few weeks of dancing around the subject, New York Governor David Paterson will announce that his administration is introducing legislation to legalize same-sex marriage in the Empire State.
According to a blog in the New York Times, Paterson will make the dramatic announcement on Thursday, April 16.
Paterson has been under pressure since both houses of Vermont’s legislature override its Republican governor’s veto last week. That means that New York is now surrounded by five jurisdictions–Ontario, Quebec, Vermont, Massachusetts and Connecticut–that allow gay marriage. And there is expected to be a sixth, New Jersey, which already has civil unions, soon.
It’s very unusual in New York State for a governor to introduce a bill without being assured in advance that it will pass. But the pressure on Paterson from the Empire State Pride Agenda, the state’s principle gay-rights group, and certain factions of the state’s Democratic Party may have pushed his hand.
Eliot Spitzer, who was governor before Paterson (and whom he succeeded after a prostitution scandal) introduced a gay-marriage bill in 2007 that passed the Assembly but failed in the Senate. But there was a slight GOP majority in the Senate, and in New York politics, that makes all the difference.
via EDGE Boston: Gay Marriage Takes Giant Step in New York State