Paterson "Backpedaling" Gay Marriage, or Peddling It?

The status of Governor Paterson's gay marriage bill is garbled, possibly by the Governor himself. "Paterson backpedals on gay marriage," says Newsday, claiming he will "go along with a plan by State Senate Majority Leader Malcolm Smith not to put a same-sex marriage bill to a vote without knowing it would pass." Other outlets run with the story. But NY1 says he's "putting the pressure on state lawmakers to vote on a gay marriage bill." Both use Paterson's same mysterious quote regarding majority leader Malcolm Smith: "Senator Smith knows the inertia of the Senate better than anyone else... I'll stick with his final judgment."

Meanwhile it seems the world around him is going gay: The Connecticut Legislature passed a marriage equality bill and the governor says she will sign it. (It contains an amendment to protect religious groups from the related discriminations they constantly predict.) A poll finds New Jersey citizens favor same-sex marriage. Maine is considering a bill, and 4,000 people attended a public forum on the subject in the Civic Center in Augusta.

Michael Bloomberg continues to press for it, around these parts anyway, backing marriage equality is now an easy way for local politicians to show some responsiveness to their constituents. The Republicans, meanwhile, continue to insist that gay marriage unfairly kept Miss California from the Miss USA throne. They have that and Rudy Giuliani. Oh, and ancient bigotries, which should never be counted out.

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