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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: May 17, 2011

Contact: Allen Roskoff: 917-553-7180 aroskoff@mac.com


Natasha Dillon: 917-520-8554, QueerRising@gmail.com

LGBT GROUPS TELL CUOMO TO STOP STALLING ON MARRIAGE EQUALITY

New York, NY –Jim Owles Liberal Democratic Club and Queer Rising slammed Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s caution on passing
long overdue legislation opening marriage to same-sex couples in New York. Cuomo was quoted this week saying the
votes in the Republican-led Senate may not be there and that he will pull the bill rather than let it be voted down again.

“Any Governor that is capable of getting a budget--and a conservative budge at that--passed on time has the power to
secure passage of the Marriage Equality bill,” said Allen Roskoff, founder and President of Jim Owles Liberal Democratic
Club, citywide LGBT club. “If he can’t get it done, then we’ll know that he has been paying nothing but lip service to our
rights just like Mayor Mike Bloomberg who practically owns the Republicans in the Senate after the millions he has given
them but has yet to produce a single vote for the bill. Cuomo must use the full power of his office and expend political
capital to achieve passage of what he claims is one of his legislative priorities.”

The groups say that the Governor is not expending the political capital he possesses to get the bill passed. Gay City
News just reported ("Will Cuomo Get on the Phone?," May 11) that the Governor has not made phone calls or held
meetings with some key senators, which the groups believe is necessary for passage. The Governor has claimed that
his tactic has been to speak with "the people," but he has not organized "the people" to lobby their Senators on it. The
governor has not even had the bill introduced as one of his program bills.

“Cuomo’s support for Marriage Equality is appearing more to be a political stunt than an act of commitment to do
the right thing,” says Natasha Dillon, a founding member of Queer Rising. “The Governor has not done the lobbying
necessary to change votes. He had misled New Yorkers into believing that passage of marriage equality was going to
happen this year and now is backtracking. It is our responsibility to hold him accountable for the promises he made to
get elected.”

“Gay supporters of Mayor Bloomberg should also be held accountable. Specifically David Mixner who chaired LGBT
New Yorkers for Michael Bloomberg, Brian Ellner who is now fronting for the Human Rights Campaign, and Richard
Socarides, another Bloomberg booster who defended and help orchestrate former President Bill Clinton's signing of
the Defense of Marriage Act in 1996 that denies all federal recognition of same-sex marriages,” Roskoff continued by
saying, “Bloomberg appealed a court order to open New York’s marriage bureaus to gay and lesbian couples in 2005
and got our rights overturned in the Court of Appeals and these gay people still supported him for re-election. While
Bloomberg is now kicking in some money and claims to be lobbying for same-sex marriage, he is lobbying Republican
legislators that he bought and paid for long ago and should have been able to deliver in 2009. What's more, these same
Bloomberg-backed Republican State Senators are delivering devastating cuts to programs that serve homeless LGBT
youth, people with AIDS, survivors of domestic violence, and more."

"Cuomo's recanting conviction appears to be on the heels of disapproval from Republican pressure. We believe it is
unwise for Cuomo to succumb to such pressures, this would be a true betrayal to all New Yorkers," said Dillon.

Queer Rising and Jim Owles Liberal Democratic Club urge all New Yorkers to call Governor Cuomo to demand that he
use the powers of his office to achieve Marriage Equality for all New Yorkers. Governor Cuomo's number is 212-681-
4580.