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A new robo-call from Gov. Andrew Cuomo urges New Yorkers to call their lawmakers and ask them to vote in support of marriage equality. "It is a question of New York going forward or backward," says the governor.
The New York State Democratic Committee released a transcript of the call on Monday afternoon. Calls will go out to regions across the state starting this week.
Cuomo, who enjoys high approval ratings and is working with the New Yorkers United for Marriage coalition of LGBT advocacy groups, said last week that he felt "optimistic" the legislature could pass a marriage equality bill before the session ends in June. The bill failed two years ago in the state senate, where Republicans hold a slim 32-30 majority and no GOP senator publicly supports the measure at this time.
In the coming days, Cuomo plans to tour New York state to promote his legislative priorities of marriage equality, ethics reform, and a property tax cap. However, he did not speak at the Equality and Justice Day lobbying event that drew more than 1,000 New Yorkers to Albany on Monday, although lieutenant governor Robert Duffy assured the crowd of the administration's commitment in his morning remarks.
The full transcript of the robo-call from Cuomo, as provided by the New York State Democratic Committee, follows.
Hello, I'm Governor Andrew Cuomo.
There is a pressing issue of basic fairness and civil rights in New York...and that is marriage equality.
Without the ability to marry, same-sex couples and their families are denied over one thousand federal and state rights such as visiting a spouse in a hospital in the event of illness.
It makes same-sex couples second tier citizens who receive less protection and have fewer rights than others.
This is not a Democratic or Republican issue. It is a question of New York going forward or backward.
It's hard to imagine today, but at one time in this country it was illegal for blacks and whites to marry each other. We have come a long way and now it is time to go further - to achieve marriage equality for all New Yorkers.
I urge you to call your State legislators and ask them to vote for equality - marriage equality - for all New Yorkers.