Ball officially a ‘no’ on same-sex marriage


After months of speculation as to his position on same-sex marriage, Sen. Greg Ball just made it official: he’s a “no.”

The announcement didn’t come as a complete surprise.

Ball, a Republican from Patterson, Putnam County, had been pushing for much stricter language to protect religious groups and non-profits from law suits if they fail to recognize same-sex couple. But it became clear in recent days that the language wouldn’t rise to the level Ball was seeking.

Senate Republicans are set to meet later tonight — possibly into the early hours Friday — to decide whether to bring the bill to a vote. It already passed the Assembly, and a handful of GOP senators successfully pushed for an amendment (still not released to the public) for stricter religious protections.

There are currently 31 confirmed “yes” votes, with a small handful of Republicans — including Stephen Saland of Poughkeepsie and Mark Grisanti of Buffalo — who say they’re undecided.

Here’s Ball’s statement, in full:

“Knowing that marriage equality was likely to pass, I thought it important to force the issue of religious protections. Over the past few weeks, I’ve had the distinct opportunity of listening to literally thousands of residents, on both sides of this issue, by holding an undecided stance. I thought it was important to listen to all of my constituents and hold an undecided position until the actual bill language was written and everyone’s voice had been heard. Now that the final text is public, I am proud that I have secured some strong protections for religious institutions and basic protections for religious organizations. The bill still lacks many of the basic religious protections I thought were vital, and for this reason, and as I did in the Assembly, I will be voting ‘no.’”


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  1. Jon in Rochester on

    This man was never undecided!

    Why is Mr. Ball so insecure in his own masculinity? I’m waiting for the day that he is caught trolling Craigs List. Chris Lee was very opposed to gay rights but not only was he trolling for woman he was also interested in transvestites and cross dressers (Google it). Remember Larry Craig? He also led a double life. It makes me wonder!!!

  2. Jon, I agree with you that Ball was never undecided. My husband spoke with Ball about 2 weeks ago at the A&P in Patterson, and Ball was certainly not “on the fence” then. He’s just been playing everyone for the media attention.

  3. I’m glad he’s voting No,but I wish he 1)hadn’t milked it for publicity for so long and 2) didn’t call it “marriage equality”,which frames the issue in the terms claimed by the supporters.

  4. Jon in Rochester on

    No. I don’t hate the man. I think he is a big slime ball! He will do anything for publicity. He talks about morality yet it has been reported that he stole from a charity to support his campaign, touched a woman inappropriately in a bar, and submitted a “thank you” by a fake constituent to a newspaper to get some publicity. He’s not an honest person. He used this insincere “on the fence” story to gain state and national attention.

    I was just stating other examples of hypocrisy in the GOP! As history has shown, the ones that cried wolf the loudest had the most to hide, thus my example of Christopher Lee (who trolled for transvestites and cross dressers on Craig’s List) and Larry Craig (who was trying to solicit anonymous sex in a men’s room).

  5. Senator Ball must not have read the latest edition of Psychology Today. It explains in scientific terms and methods that homophobes against the rights of others are turned on by gay porn. In other words, those who scream the loudest against gay rights are generally scared of their own hidden sexuality. No heterosexual who is perfectly ok with their own sexuality bothers about other peoples sexual orientation or proclivities.

  6. For all his claims to be supportive of equal treatment for Gay couples, at the end of the day Greg Ball simply does not have the courage of his convictions.

    What sorts of religious exemptions or protections were needed in this bill? Churches have never been FORCED to provide weddings and other services to anyone. Even though Muslim and Jewish and Atheist couples are legally allowed to marry, churches were never compelled to provide those couples with ceremonies. None of that was going to change when Gay couples were allowed to marry also.

    And ANYWAY, none of the legal benefits and protections of marriage come from the church. They come from GOVERNMENT.

  7. So he admits he lied about being undecided to get attention and so-called protections that he will vote against anyway. Disgusting.

  8. Gays have been persecuted for thousands of years, and religion has had a long history of persecuting gays as well as other people and groups. Giving the bully protection from the victim is sheer backwards.

  9. Mykelb,
    so Psychology Today is recycling that tired old slander the homosexual lobby figures will be likeliest to silence those who correct their offensive claims!…sorry,but lots of us are against homosexual activity for sincere and consistent reasons without the slightest inclination toward it ourselves.We just understand the implications of the evolution of sexual dimorphism in a species and don’t rationalize errant impulses from a viewpoint of entitlement.
    Governments have a responsibility to discourage the formation and maintenance of “Gay couples”,which enable the worst instincts of those in them and should offend all those exposed to the fact of their relationships.This is not a religious issue.

  10. Jack Bradley on

    The end of his career in politics. What an asshat!! Do the right thing Ball, vote yes!

  11. He has managed to insert utterly unacceptable language into the bill.


  12. Jack,voting NO is the only right thing.The general welfare requires that public policy oppose the formation and maintenance of same-sex sexual relationships and exclude any claim to exemption from such policy.

  13. Like the Misogynists and Racists before him. Sen. Ball has placed himself on the wrong side of history.

    We are a Federal Constitutional Republic and religion has no place in our laws at any time. It is why we have a First Amendment. Thomas Jefferson wanted America to be free of the three tyrants; Warlords, Theocrats and the Wealthy. It’s time we start remembering our actual history and not the made up Palin, Bachmann, Faux News versions.

    Shame on you Sen. Ball. Shame on you!

  14. Louis, you wrote :”The general welfare requires that public policy oppose the formation and maintenance of same-sex sexual relationships”


    Again, I ask you what harm you see is being done. Please don’t answer with evasions like “everyone is being harmed” or “I don’t want to belittle the problem by giving specifics.”

    And please don’t hide behind generic statements like “emotional distress” or “nothing is safe”. Given the depth of feeling that you’ve been showing, surely you must have some clear idea of what specifc *consequences* you are concerned about.

  15. Jack Bradley on

    I just can’t understand why my getting married to the man I have loved and lived with for 37 years is going to hurt anyone. Sen. Ball, how long have you been married?

  16. Rod,you keep answering statements of definition with insistence on denial.Failure to abide by the exclusively normative status of opposite-sex relationships causes harm to the entire species in which it occurs,just by existing.There’s no such thing as a valid reason to defy that norm,and you don’t have anything besides an unhealthy desire to point to,and deny the unhealthiness of.

  17. Louis, repetition is not explanation. Like Chicken Little, you keep screaming your messages of doom, on and on about how everyone is going to be harmed.

    And yet you just can’t answer a simple question: “How are they being harmed?” Even after a week of discussion, you still haven’t been able to answer it.

    The only harm I see is the harm you’re doing yourself with your vitriol. You’re much more dangerous to yourself than I will ever be.

  18. To Jack Bradley June 24th, 2011 at 5:25 pm

    “I just can’t understand why my getting married to the man I have loved and lived with for 37 years is going to hurt anyone.”

    Jack, it won’t hurt anyone. Congratulations on the longevity of your relationship, and on the passing of this ground-breaking legislation.

    “Sen. Ball, how long have you been married?”

    He’s not married, and he’s had some stalking issues with a former girlfriend. He’s really pretty slimy.

  19. Rod,repetition of denial is not refutation.The mere existence of a same-sex sexual relationship IS a harm to everyone exposed to it.