Monday, June 8, 2009

Sen. David Valesky reconsidering his stance on same-sex marriage -

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Sen. David Valesky reconsidering his stance on same-sex marriage -

by Delen Goldberg / The Post-Standard
Sunday June 07, 2009, 8:03 AM

Less than two months ago, Sen. David Valesky said he favored civil unions over same-sex marriages and would vote against a bill to legalize gay marriage.

Now, the senator seems to be reconsidering his stance. Friday, Valesky said he is still deciding his position on gay marriage and couldn't say which way he'd vote on a bill.

"I'm undecided," said Valesky, D-Oneida.

It's a far cry from statements Valesky made in April, when Gov. David Paterson announced plans to legalize same-sex marriage in New York.

Back then, Valesky said: "Marriage is an institution between a man and woman, and I think we can address the issue of benefits for same-sex couples without addressing the question of marriage, through some sort of a civil-union statute. That's what I believe we ought to be looking at, but that's not what's being proposed by the governor."

Why the possible change in thinking?

Valesky said he has been busy meeting with constituents on the issue. Friday, he had four meetings, including one with a Cicero woman who recently was featured in an advertising campaign supporting gay marriage. In the commercial, the woman explains that she would like her two daughters -- one who is a lesbian, one who is straight -- to be treated equally under the law.

"It's a sensitive issue," Valesky said.

The Assembly passed a same-sex marriage bill in May. The Senate has yet to vote.

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