Connect with us

Quotes From New York State Senators On Gay Marriage Bill



Below is a continuously updated and quick transcription of some statements being made right now on the floor of the New York State Senate as they debate the gay marriage bill today. Quotes are exact as I can manage! Refresh the page often – newest are at the bottom.

Eric Schneiderman: This is a vote that is not about morality, that is not about religion. You can’t legislate morality, but you can legislate justice. This is about the essence of the United States of America. Every generation is called to this challenge to the quintessential challenge of making Thomas Jefferson’s words more true. This bill hurts no one. Vote for justice, vote for equality, vote for your affirmation that all men and women are created equal.

Eric Adams: There are certain moments here where we can benchmark our lives by the votes we took. (Listed group of states) All states that bought and sold slaves at one time or another. It was only until 1967, before my son could marry (another senator’s) daughter. Thank God for Google. Go read what they said about blacks being able to marry. The same comment made about Tom Duane wanting to be married are the same comments my grandmother was told. Some say, don’t try to make this a civil rights issue. When I walk through these doors, my bible stays out. I make laws that protect the entire state. There is one thing about New York: We have the legacy that sets the tone of the rest of the country. I’m going to be an agent of change. You don’t have to be gay to respect the rights of those who are. You don’t have to be black to understand the pain of slavery.

Jeffery Klein: I’d like to apologize that this took so long. (Quotes from the 14th Amendment.) I think it’s important to read the statement from Mrs. Loving (Loving vs. Virginia) NYC will benefit by $200 million if we pass gay marriage. Make a decision today not based on political reasons. This is an issue of fairness.

David Valesky: This can’t be a matter of religion. Nothing we do can be done in violation of the United States Constitution. The founding fathers made it very clear that freedom of religion is one of the most important tenets of this democracy. This bill does not, could not, and as long as our constitution stands, could never compel any house of worship to do anything against their beliefs.

Kevin Parker: The time to pass this legislation is now, because it is still the right thing to do. The morality stands in doing the right thing. We have an opportunity to change our history. This is the time we strike a blow to one of the last inequalities in our country. (Reads benefits same sex couples cannot currently acquire.) This bill is about millions of families and the basic protections they need. As we sit here now its almost ridiculous to think that at one time African-Americans could not even marry each other. I’m hoping that the idea in a few years that same sex couples couldn’t marry will be seen as equally ridiculous.

Pedro Espada: If this vote were taken in my district today, this bill would fail. But this is not about demographics, this is not about religion. Is it a vote of conscience? What is a vote of conscience? It is constitutionally correct to vote “yes.” Let’s write this headline, let’s send a message of hope, by voting yes here today. Let’s not continue to be scared into ignorance.

Diane Savino: Rarely have we faced an issue as important as this. Tens of thousands of New Yorkers lives hang in the balance here today. I hope we are going to make that history here today. This vote is about an issue of fairness and equality. We in government don’t determine the quality or the validity of relationships, if we did we wouldn’t give three quarters of the licenses we do. What are we really protecting, when you look at the divorce rate in this country. We’re giving away husbands on a game show. That’s what we’ve done to marriage in America. People stand up in front of God and swear to honor and obey, and they don’t mean a word of it. We have nothing to fear from love and commitment.

Liz Krueger: Ask yourself, how can you vote “no.”

Daniel Squadron: It’s a bill that really has to do with what sort of government we have.

Velmanette Montgomery: I will only add that in my family and my culture I just want to remind my colleagues, it was always considered that if you were living together and not married, in those days, you were living in sin. I know the whole institution of marriage has changed over time. There are some states that actually recognized common law marriage. The institution of marriage is actually a part of our government contractual practice, and we also attach religion to it. I want to remind you that if a minister marries you, and you don’t go to court, you are not married. If our husbands decide, as often happens, that they want to run away, there are certain protections I want everyone to have. I want to talk about the ministers, the doctors, the choir directors, many of whom are gay, and people in all walks of life, African Americans, Latinos, white people, black people, men, women, they are my constituents too, they would like to have the right to marry. I am voting yes so you can have the right to marry.

Jose Serrano: This is a great day. History has proven that extending civil rights further will make our communities stronger. No one should be subjugated to less rights than anyone else. Extending freedom through marriage equality is the foundation of the American ideal. What separates this nation is that we dare to say the things that others refuse to say. We cannot be free until all of us are afforded the same rights that everyone should have.

Ruth Hassell-Thompson: My oldest brother was gay. Publicly that’s something I’ve not said before. (Told a very moving story about her brother and his life away from home in France.) People have the right to choose. This bill is about giving them the right to choose. If there’s a condemnation in that choice then that is between them and God.

Craig Johnson: On January 10th, 1998, I exercised my right to marry my wife. This bill is simple, it does two things. It’s about equality. The notion of a civl union creates a separate but equal system. This bill is also about love. What’s interesting is look at the history of marriage. Historically marriage wasn’t about love it was about property. This is about civil marriage. There comes a time for this body to step up.

Bill Perkins: History reminds me that more than half of the people here would not be during another point in time. Get ready, marriage equality is here, it is inevitable. I can see Dr. Martin Luthor King smiling down on us today.

Suzi Oppenheimer: I’m glad we’re doing this today. I feel strongly that everyone is entitled to equal rights and protections. It is most assuredly a civil issue not a religious issue. Some have said it diminishes their marriage. I don’t understand that. Almost all of us have friends who are lesbian or gay. And they are for the most part in serious committed relationships in long standing. They are stable people. Isn’t that what we want?

Malcolm Smith: People are asking me, “Why are you supporting marriage?” When I ask them is why are you not? They retreat to the bible. The bible does not say same sex marriage is wrong. What is wrong is when you quote a bible for your own purposes. Please don’t quote the bible or refer to it if you don’t know what it means. Because of my religious relationships, I believe everyone in this chamber has experienced discrimination. When you experienced discrimination, it hurt. The completion of a family is not the children but a marriage. This is not a challenge to the church. It takes one. Rosa Parks was that one. Tom Duane is that one. Colleagues, we need to do this today. A win is 35 votes.

Thomas Duane: “I’m like a dog with a bone, I won’t let go until the last moment. The time is never right for civil rights. The economy, wars… it’s never, ever the right time for civil rights. But the paradox is it’s always the right time to be on the right side of history. Now is the time to put that into law – the same way that we have treated you, you have treated us. let’s not have a do-over. I was out when Harvey Milk was around, I’ve been gay a long time. Soon, I’m going to be a married gay.

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. The New Civil Rights Movement depends on readers like you to meet our ongoing expenses and continue producing quality progressive journalism. Three Silicon Valley giants consume 70 percent of all online advertising dollars, so we need your help to continue doing what we do.

NCRM is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. From unflinching coverage of religious extremism, to spotlighting efforts to roll back our rights, NCRM continues to speak truth to power. America needs independent voices like NCRM to be sure no one is forgotten.

Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Help ensure NCRM remains independent long into the future. Support progressive journalism with a one-time contribution to NCRM, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click here to donate by check.


GOP Congresswoman Saying She Would ‘Do Anything’ to Protect Her Grandchildren, Even ‘Shooting Them’ Sets Internet on Fire



U.S. Congresswoman Debbie Lesko (R-AZ) in a speech denouncing a House bill on gun safety, appears to inadvertently have declared that to protect her five grandchildren, she would “do anything,” even shoot them.

“I rise in opposition to H.R. 2377,” Congresswoman Lesko says in the video. “I have five grandchildren. I would do anything, anything to protect my five grandchildren, including as a last resort shooting them if I had to, to protect the lives of my grandchildren.”

NCRM has verified the video is accurate. Congresswoman Lesko made the remarks on June 9, according to C-SPAN, while she was opposing a red flag law.

The Congresswoman presumably meant she would as a last resort shoot someone threatening her grandchildren.

One Twitter user, Ryan Shead, posted the previously ignored video to Twitter, where it has gone viral and is trending.

Lesko, who some social media users note is running for re-election unopposed, went on to say: “Democrat bills that we have heard this week want to take away my right, my right to protect my grandchildren. they want to take away the rights of law-abiding citizens to protect their own children and grandchildren. and wives and brothers and sisters,” which is false.

“This bill takes away due process from law-abiding citizens. Can you imagine if you had a disgruntled ex or somebody who hates you because of your political views and they go to a judge and say, ‘oh, this person is dangerous,’ and that judge would take away your guns?”

Lesko’s hypothetical claims are false. Red flag laws are designed to protect both gun owners and those around them.

Some social media users noted that Congresswoman Lesko reportedly “attended meetings about overturning the election,” while others are having fun with the Arizona Republican’s remarks:

Watch Congresswoman Lesko’s remarks above or at this link.


Continue Reading


Separation of Church and State Is a ‘Fabrication’ Says Far Right Activist Charlie Kirk: They Should Be ‘Mixed Together’



Far-right religious activist, conspiracy theorist, and founder of the right-wing organization Turning Point USA Charlie Kirk has falsely declared that separation of church and state, a bedrock principle on which American society is based, is a “fabrication” not in the Constitution.

Kirk is a member of the secretive theocratic Council for National Policy., a close friend of Donald Trump, Jr., and spent years promoting President Trump – even interviewing him at one point. Turning Point USA has had repeated challenges. The New Yorker’s Jane Mayer in 2017 write a piece about TPUSA titled, “A Conservative Nonprofit That Seeks to Transform College Campuses Faces Allegations of Racial Bias and Illegal Campaign Activity.”

Former TPUSA communications director Candace Owens has praised Hitler, saying “the problem” with him was that he wanted to “globalize.”

RELATED: Watch: Charlie Kirk Calls for Texans to Be ‘Deputized’ to Protect ‘White Demographics in America’

On Wednesday Kirk declared, “There is no separation of church and state. It’s a fabrication. It’s a fiction. It’s not in the Constitution. It’s made up by secular humanists.”

That’s false.

The claim separation of church and state is not in the Constitution is a religious right belief that has been debunked by countless legal experts.

“Of course we should have church and state mixed together,” Kirk continued. “Our Founding Fathers believed in that. We can go through the detail of that. They established – literally – a church in Congress.”

That too is false.

RELATED: ‘When Do We Get to Use the Guns?’: TP USA Audience Member Asks Charlie Kirk When Can ‘We Kill’ Democrats? (Video)

“It’s a good thing Charlie Kirk doesn’t go to Wheaton because he would fail my Constitutional Law class,” writes Dr. Miranda Yaver, PhD, a Wheaton College professor.

As most public school students know, Kirk’s claims are belied by the First Amendment to the U.S., Constitution, which states:

“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

It’s the Establishment Clause, legal experts say, that debunks Kirk’s falsehood.

In reviewing the Supreme Court’s recent rulings, Reuters last month noted: “It was President Thomas Jefferson who famously said in an 1802 letter that the establishment clause should represent a ‘wall of separation’ between church and state. The provision prevents the government from establishing a state religion and prohibits it from favoring one faith over another.”

Jefferson is also considered the principal author of the Declaration of Independence.

Watch Charlie Kirk below or at this link.



Continue Reading


Pat Cipollone Is ‘A Greatest Hits Package of Crazy Statements’ by Donald Trump: Legal Expert



Former White House Counsel Pat Cipollone has agreed to speak to the House Select Committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on Congress on Friday.

Former Assistant Deputy Attorney General Harry Litman told CNN that Cipollone has carefully negotiated the testimony and he will likely “steer around down the middle” of the attorney/client privilege. However, former President Donald Trump is not the client of a White House counsel, the White House is. President Joe Biden has waived executive privilege for anything involving Jan. 6 or the 2020 election.

“He is a greatest hits package of crazy statements by Donald Trump,” Litman said of Cipollone. “He is the one who says to Mark Meadows, ‘You know, if you do this, you’ll have blood on your effing hands.’ He’s the one who says to Mark Meadows about [Mike] Pence, ‘You’ve got to stop it’ and Meadows says, ‘You’ve heard him. He thinks the rioters are right.’ He’s the one who has to go to Cassidy Hutchinson, a 25-year-old, and plead with her because Meadows won’t speak to him. ‘Please try to keep him from going to the Capitol.’ He’s the one who says, ‘if I go to the Capitol, it will be every effing crime imaginable.'”

READ MORE: Longtime friend of GOP’s Eric Greitens calls him a ‘broken man’ and accuses him of lying about his beliefs

“Now, they’ve negotiated it up, and probably what he wants is to say he’s not piercing attorney/client privilege. But all these statements I’ve said to you, Trump’s nowhere around. So, attorney/client has to be with the client for the purpose of getting legal advice, so he’s got tons to say without that.”

As Litman explained, Cipollone is in “everything.”

See the discussion below.

Image: Official White House Photo by Andrea Hanks  via Flickr:
President Donald J. Trump and First Lady Melania Trump talk with Supreme Court Associate Justice Amy Coney Barrett, her husband Jesse Barrett, Supreme Court Associate Justice Clarence Thomas, his wife Virginia Thomas, White House Counsel Pat Cipollone, and Deputy White House Counsel Kate Comerford Todd in the Blue Room of the White House Monday, Oct. 26, 2020, after attending Barrett’s swearing-in ceremony as Supreme Court Associate Justice.


Continue Reading


Copyright © 2020 AlterNet Media.