New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has submitted a marriage equality bill to the New York Senate.
The bill contains a religious exemption clause, which could be very helpful in swaying the vote of GOP Senator Greg Ball, who has said his vote hinges on that language. The clause:
“The bill also guarantees that religious institutions and benevolent organizations such as the Knights of Columbus remain free to choose who may use their facilities for marriage ceremonies and celebrations or to whom they provide religious services, consistent with their religious principles.”
The bill also states that once passed, marriage equality would become valid in 30 days.
Cuomo has said in the past that he would not submit the marriage equality bill unless it had the votes to pass.
"From the fight for women's suffrage to the struggle for civil rights, New Yorkers have been on the right side of history. But on the issue of marriage equality, our state has fallen behind. For too long, same-sex couples have been denied the freedom to marry, as well as hundreds of rights that other New Yorkers take for granted. Marriage Equality is a matter of fairness and legal security for thousands of families in this state – not of religion or culture. When it comes to fighting for what's right, New Yorkers wrote the book, and Marriage Equality is the next chapter of our civil rights story."
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