Transgender Bill Passes Assembly; Bellwether for Gay Marriage?


Before they get to Paterson’s gay marriage bill, let’s see if they can pass this first: the Assembly has cleared the Gender Expression Non-Discrimination Act (GENDA), which would prohibit discrimination on the basis of gender identity or expression in matters or employment, education, etc. It would also extend the state’s hate crimes law to cover incidents motivated on that basis. As explained by the Transgender Law and Policy Institute, current anti-discrimination law, which protects gay citizens, is too narrowly defined because “not all transgender people are gay… When transgender people face discrimination it often has no relationship to our sexual orientation.”

The bill has passed the Assembly before but stalled in the formerly Republican senate. If this gets to the Senate ahead of Paterson’s bill, it’ll be interesting to see how marriage equality enigmas like senator Brian Foley vote — and also if any Republicans peel off for it.

Update 7:30 pm: Hmm. The Advocate reports a Log Cabin Republicans announcement, claiming Albany’s Republican leaders will not attempt enforce a “no” vote on gay marriage. But are there any GOP senators who will exercise this freedom?