Governor Andrew Cuomo is featured in robocalls urging New Yorkers to pressure their local lawmakers to support same-sex marriage.
Calling it a “pressing issue of basic fairness and civil rights,” the Democratic governor is careful not to single out any particular group or legislator as enemies on this issue. Rather, he says, “This is not a Democratic or Republican issue. It is a question of New York going forward or backward.”
The governor’s top aides have been coordinating with same-sex marriage advocates for months. Advocates, like those at the Human Rights Campaign, have kept the conversation from breaking down into the kind of hardline rhetoric that marked the run-up to the 2009 vote in the State Senate, which failed 38-24.
Here’s Cuomo’s script.
Hello, I’m Governor Andrew Cuomo.
There is a pressing issue of basic fairness and civil rights in New York…and that is marriage equality.
Without the ability to marry, same-sex couples and their families are denied over one thousand federal and state rights such as visiting a spouse in a hospital in the event of illness.
It makes same-sex couples second tier citizens who receive less protection and have fewer rights than others.
This is not a Democratic or Republican issue. It is a question of New York going forward or backward.
It’s hard to imagine today, but at one time in this country it was illegal for blacks and whites to marry each other. We have come a long way and now it is time to go further — to achieve marriage equality for all New Yorkers.
I urge you to call your State legislators and ask them to vote for equality – marriage equality- for all New Yorkers.