New York’s Legislature is meeting in extraordinary session to confront a $3.2 billion deficit and possibly hold a landmark vote to provide final legislative approval of same-sex marriage.
However, there were no agreements Monday that were certain to be part of Tuesday’s session.
The Senate may also take up a bill to legalize same-sex marriage. Even if the issue comes to a vote, it remains unclear whether 35 senators would give it the support needed.
After last week, it would be tremendous news. But the marriage bill’s fate is uncertain.
Advocates on both sides of the issue lobbied senators over the weekend, but it was still unclear whether the measure could earn the 32 votes needed for approval. Democrats hold a shaky 32-to-30 majority in the Senate — and the measure does not have full support across the party line.
Those who favor the bill believe now might be the best time to try and push through the measure, as all 212 seats in the Legislature and the governor’s post are up for election in 2010.
The possible vote will come just a week after Maine narrowly rejected its own version of a same-sex marriage bill.
According to The New York Times, supporters of the bill in Albany believe they can count on about 25 votes for the legislation at this time.
“The stakes are much higher now, following Maine, and it would be an enormous boost to the movement to prevail in New York,” said Matt Foreman, a gay rights advocate who has served as the head of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force and the Empire State Pride Agenda, New York’s leading gay rights group told the Times.
But, he added, “if we don’t win marriage in New York in this special session, it’s going to be a very hard lift next year.”