Sen. James Alesi, R-Perinton, said he knows which way he’ll vote on the issue of gay marriage—but he’s not telling.
Much was made of the Monroe County senator’s “no” vote last year when a bill to legalize same-sex marriage came to the floor, when he was seen agonizing over his decision before reluctantly casting his vote. That bill failed in the Senate, 38 to 24.
Alesi said he won’t make his position public because he’s the first Republican on the roll, and he doesn’t want his decision to sway the other members of the majority conference if the bill comes up again.
“I think when you take an important issue and the name Alesi comes up, the train either leaves the station or it doesn’t,” he said.
Several senators who voted against the bill last year are no longer in office, including Frank Padavan, a New York City Republican, and George Winner, R-Elmira. Alesi is seen as a potential swing vote, as is Sen. Greg Ball, R-Carmel, Putnam County, who reiterated today that he is undecided on the issue.
“I think there will be an awful lot of pressure on people that need the Conservative endorsement, and there’s going to be an awful lot of pressure on people who maybe in their hearts would like to vote in the affirmative on this issue,” Alesi said. “The way I cast my vote could determine the fate of gay marriage in New York state.”