Thursday, May 29, 2008

Gov. Paterson Calls For Recognizing CA Gay Marriage

Governor David Paterson of New York has put out a call to his state agencies and departments to begin promulgating rules and regulations that accept and recognize gay marriages performed in California.

But is what he's doing actually legal or authorized under the New York State Constitution? Don Surber seems to think so. I concur.

Gov. Paterson has ordered state agencies and departments to amend rules so that "spouse," "husband" and "wife" are clearly understood to include gay couples, according to a memo sent earlier this month from the governor's counsel.

Gov. Paterson seems to be jumping the gun quite a bit here, given that the State Constitution authorizes the Legislature to act on such measures. This is not merely some minor issue, but is a fiscal one as extending benefits to gay partners/spouses is a cost to be borne by the state and its taxpayers.

Yet, the Legislature has no say in the matter?

I think Gov. Paterson may have just gotten himself into trouble.

Look, if New Yorkers want to extend benefits to gay partners/spouses, that's fine, but the Governor can't do so by fiat.

There is a legislative process that must be followed, and that has not been the case here.

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