Anti-gay preacher and NY state Sen. Ruben Diaz Sr. is positively freaked about Gov. Paterson introducing a marriage equality bill tomorrow and has called for an “emergency summit.” Oh noes! Homos! Elizabeth Benjamin at the NY Daily News:
Sen. Ruben Diaz Sr. has called an emergency summit of the New York Hispanic Clergy Organization tomorrow to strategize on the “next steps to take” in response to Gov. David Paterson’s expected introduction of a bill to legalize same-sex marriage. In a brief telephone interview this morning, Diaz Sr., a Pentecostal minister who has long been vocal in his opposition to gay marriage, questioned Paterson’s timing and called it “ridiculous,” particularly given the fact that this is the week Archbishop Timothy Dolan is being installed in his new job. “I think this is the wrong time to do it,” Diaz Sr. said. “(Paterson) is doing this as a welcoming ceremony for the new Catholic? It’s ridiculous.” In the press release announcing tomorrow’s meeting at the Christian Community Neighborhood Church, the Bronx Democrat went even further, calling the governor’s move “disrespectful, and adding: “If I were Governor Paterson, I would abstain from going to St. Patrick’s Cathedral for the welcoming ceremony and to celebrate Mass.”
Benjamin also point us to this story in which openly gay Sen. Thomas Duane says he believes the Senate DOES now have the necessary votes to pass marriage equality.
Sen. Tom Duane said that he is confident that a bill to legalize same-sex marriage will pass this year, and that it will pass with bipartisan support.“I always knew that this would happen with bipartisan support. And it is always about building more and more support. We are not going to do this just with a majority, but a majority with extra votes,” said Duane. “I don’t have the exact time frame. But it will be this year,” he added. Duane said he has received commitments of support from individual Republican senators, but wouldn’t name them. Duane said that he did not think that those unnamed senators would renege on their commitment to him, based on Republicans’ history of passing bills such as the hate crimes bill of 2000 and the Sexual Orientation Non-Discrimination Act (SONDA), which passed in 2002.
Just a few days ago, Duane was critical of Paterson’s decision to introduce the marriage equality bill, saying it was better to wait until we had the votes. What changed?
RELATED: It’s widely thought that Diaz got a “no gay marriage” promise from Sen. Malcolm Smith (D) in return for supporting him as Majority Leader.