A few days ago, Rabbi Noson Leiter of Torah Jews for Decency said Hurricane Sandy brought a “divine justice” upon New York State as retribution for legalizing same sex marriage. To prove his point Rabbi Leiter pointed to the storm damage in Lower Manhattan, which he referred to as “one of the national centers for homosexuality,” to make his point. In a statement released this afternoon, Governor Andrew Cuomo, who led the push for New York’s gay marriage legislation last year, took issue with the remark.
“The comments made by Rabbi Noson Leiter that sought to link the devastation caused by Hurricane Sandy to our state’s embrace of marriage equality are as offensive as they are ignorant,” Mr. Cuomo said. “This catastrophic storm claimed the lives of more than forty New Yorkers. This kind of hateful rhetoric has no place in our public discourse, and is particularly distasteful in times of tragedy.”
After Election Day earlier this month, Republicans who supported New York’s same sex marriage legislation received mixed results against their anti-gay marriage rivals. One GOP senator, Buffalo’s Mark Grisanti, cruised to a comfortable victory, while two other senators, Roy McDonald and Steve Saland faced tough challenges, the result of which was determined by the absentee ballots counted this week. Mr. Saland looks like he ultimately edged out his opponent and declared victory yesterday, but Mr. McDonald appears to have gone down in defeat.
And, asked about these Republicans’ respective electoral situations earlier today, Governor Andrew Cuomo said he was more than pleased despite being a Democrat.
It’s Election Day in New York next Thursday! But instead of a titanic battle between ideologies–your Mitt Romneys vs. Barack Obamas, if you will–the options on the ballot will be little-noticed state legislative contests between candidates of the same party, often with few policy differences.