On a recent Tuesday night, when State Senator James Alesi was introduced to a same-sex marriage celebration hosted by the Human Rights Campaign, a swanky Chelsea bar exploded with cheers and whistles.
“That’s exactly what it sounded like when I went to church on Sunday,” Mr. Alesi told a few hundred attendees. The audience, packed into the Hiro Ballroom of the Maritime Hotel, roared with laughter.
Exactly one week before Governor Cuomo’s self-imposed deadline to legalize same-sex marriage, advocates for the measure will meet with the state’s leading Republican, whose caucus uniformly rejected the measure when it was voted down in 2009.
The head of the Empire State Pride Agenda, Ross Levi, and other advocates, will meet with Republican State Senator Dean Skelos in Albany, a spokesman for the legislator confirmed. Skelos “will continue to meet with advocates on both sides of this issue,” his spokesman, Scott Reif, said in an email.
Here’s Republican State Senator Jim Alesi (center) — a crucial vote on same-sex marriage — attending the gala in Rochester hosted by the Empire State Pride Agenda. He’s shaking hands with Mark Siwiec, a real estate broker and Democratic donor who is openly gay. On Alesi’s left is ESPA executive director Ross Levi. Read More
“We continue to believe the environment is strong. A solid majority of New Yorkers are on our side.”
–Ross Levi, executive director of the Empire State Pride Agenda, in an interview with PolitickerNY discussing same-sex marriage.