Smith: ‘I Am Fully Committed’ to Passing Same-Sex Marriage Bill

ALBANY—Senate Majority Leader Malcolm Smith just came out with this statement on same-sex marriage, which the governor announced legislation for earlier today.

Smith did not attend the press event, though four members of his Democratic conference did. So far, it does not appear that the legislation has the 32 votes required to pass the bill in the Senate.

I have been and continue to be a strong supporter of marriage equality and remain steadfast in my commitment to passing the marriage equality legislation submitted today by Governor Paterson. No person should ever be denied their civil rights or the basic freedoms others can enjoy.

 I am fully committed to continuing the process of securing the 32 votes necessary for passage and ensuring that all New Yorkers can realize the right of marriage equality which is fundamentally theirs.

Republicans are responding to the governor's action by criticizing his timing, but not the merits of the proposal. Assembly Minority Leader Brian Kolb said "instead of spending his time and energy advocating for same sex marriage, the governor should be discussing how we can put New Yorkers back to work."