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Stung by the loss of a marriage equality bill last year but emboldened by this week's defeat of antigay former state senator Hiram Monserrate, New York gay rights advocates are again looking toward a senate vote on same-sex marriage.
According to Reuters, "Advocates aim to bring the issue of same-sex marriage to the Senate floor as early as next year."
On Tuesday, Monserrate, one of eight Democrats who voted against the marriage equality bill in December, was resoundingly defeated in a special election for his former senate seat from Queens. Fight Back New York, a political action committee supported by gay philanthropist Tim Gill, targeted Monserrate for defeat.
The PAC intends to challenge some of the other Democrats who voted against the marriage equality bill, according to Reuters.
However, marriage equality opponents like the Catholic Church and the National Organization for Marriage expressed doubt that the Monserrate defeat indicated any significant change in the political climate that saw the bill defeated 38-24 in its first-ever senate vote.
"They no longer are persuading people that gay marriage is a good idea," said NOM president Maggie Gallagher, according to Reuters. "I don't think it's very credible to claim that this victory is some sort of bellwether for the popularity of gay marriage in elections in New York."