Monday, March 23, 2009

Schumer backs marriage, repeal of DOMA

The news U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer endorsed marriage for same-sex couples at a dinner organized by Empire State Pride Agenda executive director Alan Van Capelle and former ESPA co-chair Jeff Soref last night in Manhattan has spread like wildfire since New York Daily News reporter Liz Benjamin broke the story on her blog.

New York City Council Speaker Christine Quinn and Assemblymembers Danny O'Donnell, Deborah Glick and Micah Kellner were among those who dined with Schumer at the Gramercy Tavern. Schumer's office told the Daily News in a statement "it's time" to support gays and lesbians as they seek the right to marry.

"Equality is something that has always been a hallmark of America and no group should be deprived of it. New York, which has always been at the forefront on issues of equality, is appropriately poised to take a lead on this issue," it said in a statement.

Schumer further indicated he would back a full repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act for which he voted in 1996. This dinner may very well amount to a watershed moment both for LGBT politics in New York and around the country.

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