The annual LGBT Pride Celebration in New York City will be a festive one this year in the wake of Friday’s passage of a same-sex marriage bill in the Empire State. New York, the country’s most populous state, joins Connecticut, Iowa, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont, and the District of Columbia in offering full marriage equality to same-sex couples. New York’s addition to this list doubles the number of American citizens living in marriage equality states.
Governor Mario Cuomo called New York “a beacon for social justice” after succeeding at bringing together Republican donors and reluctant lawmakers to gather the votes needed to pass the bill in a Republican-controlled Senate, ending up with a 33-29 vote. A number of Republican lawmakers changed their votes from the last time New York voted on this issue in 2009, including state senator Roy McDonald, who resisted pressure from his party and did what he called, in a strong statement, “the right thing.”
New York has no residency requirement to get a marriage license . New Yorkers, and any same-sex couple traveling to New York, can marry there beginning July 24. That’s less than a month from now, so good luck to the wedding planners.