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Marriage Equality Conference on Tap for NY Senate Again Today


Senate Republicans plan to conference the marriage equality bill once more today. They have not yet decided on a vote:

The bill is also at the center of furious horse-trading over everything from New York City rent control laws and property taxes to state university tuition levels and a whole host of other unrelated issues as the Legislature tries to end its 2011 session in the coming days.

In a week that has seen five senators flip their positions to now support same-sex marriage, the handful of undecided senators -- including freshman Sen. Mark Grisanti of Buffalo -- said they remained on the fence after the marathon, closed-door meeting among Republicans.

"I am where I was yesterday," said Grisanti, who has moved from a no vote to uncertain.

Senator Greg Ball, who has been vocal about wanting religious exemptions in the bill, which have been provided, says he still wants more in an interview shot yesterday following the Senate conference yesterday. In two clips, he talks about those requests, and gives some insight into the tone of yesterday's Senate conference (video 2).

Watch Ball's interview, AFTER THE JUMP...

Jimmy Vielkind at Capitol Confidential reports on Robin Wilson, a law professor at Washington & Lee in Virginia, who drafted a letter to Sen. Greg Ball, comparing New York’s pending same-sex marriage bill with laws enacted in other states.

Check out the letter here.

Cuomo spokesman Josh Vlasto said no further changes to the bill were being considered.

Here's some more insight into Mark Grisanti of Buffalo:

"It's something I think about almost every second of every day in the last couple of weeks," said Grisanti, the lone Western New York Republican who is considering support for the bill, which is backed by Democratic Sen. Timothy M. Kennedy of Buffalo.

Friends say that Grisanti has almost become consumed by the weight of the issue and that he is torn between his personal beliefs as a Catholic in a conservative district and the issue's civil rights concerns as a lawyer.

"If I take the Catholic out of me, which is hard to do, then absolutely they should have these rights," Grisanti said.

"It has nothing to do with politics. It has to do with my own personal belief."

Watch Ball's interview, AFTER THE JUMP...

NOTE TO READERS: It is urgent that you call your Senators and ask them to support this bill, particularly the Senators in THIS LIST.

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  1. "If I take the Catholic out of me, which is hard to do, then absolutely they should have these rights," Grisanti said.

    Has this man ever heard of the Establishment Clause?

    Posted by: Hunter | Jun 16, 2011 7:44:23 AM

  2. Senator Grisanti: Leave out your Catholic. You weren’t born that way.

    Posted by: ichabod | Jun 16, 2011 7:58:47 AM

  3. what does his religion have anything to do with secular law????

    Posted by: Disgusted Gay American | Jun 16, 2011 7:59:08 AM

  4. If this does pass, great, but the fact that we continue to see these politicians putting their personal beliefs ahead of legality is sickening. Do they know why they are in office? Jesus isn't the reason.

    Posted by: Francis | Jun 16, 2011 8:07:37 AM

  5. Don't make any more changes to please Greg Ball. He's not going to vote for the bill under any circumstances.

    Posted by: jpeckjr | Jun 16, 2011 8:28:50 AM

  6. Use your head New Yorkers and don't waste your energy on this slime ball-geddit?

    At least you know where you stand with Diaz. Ball is the worse kind of GOP who is smiling in your face saying he loves you but then wants to make sure that NO ONE can actually marry you, anywhere if they simply say they believe in spaceships, men walking over water or elephants as gods.

    What a jackass.

    Posted by: Rowan | Jun 16, 2011 8:34:45 AM

  7. I think this guy is a lost cause. Can you really ever appeal to someone who uses the phrase, "indoctrination of children"?

    I wish he'd said that in the second interview. That interviewer was brilliant and didn't let him say anything without explaining what he meant. Who is she?

    Posted by: Dastius Krazitauc | Jun 16, 2011 8:37:17 AM

  8. A person of normal intelligence would have to agree that "representative government" is inconsistent with "inflicting my personal beliefs" on those represented. Why, then, would an elected official stand up in public and mention the possibility that he would abuse his elected position to inflict his personal beliefs on the public? Is he stupid? No. He has been so thoroughly indoctrinated as a child that he doesn't realize what he's really saying.

    Posted by: Russell | Jun 16, 2011 8:55:00 AM

  9. I knew those religious exemptions were just a bluff for Ball... jackasses like him love moving the goalposts.

    Posted by: Rich F. | Jun 16, 2011 9:16:09 AM

  10. Why the hell are they still courting Sen. Ball?? Let that double-talking cretin be. Waste of time and air space.

    Posted by: vernon | Jun 16, 2011 9:22:37 AM

  11. why is this man an elected official if he puts his own personal religious beliefs above something he thinks is right for his constituents ? He thinks it should be law (which is his the law) Can you believe these people say this out loud ? Does he not know how strange that sounds ? If he struggles with his job because of his religion then he should resign and give the job to someone impartial that can do the job properly.

    Posted by: Paul | Jun 16, 2011 9:24:20 AM

  12. Gay marriage is for equal CIVIL rights, not acceptance within "religion." When archbishops step in with their religious view point on secular issues, they overstep the line.

    Posted by: amandafierro | Jun 17, 2011 2:49:26 AM

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