New York Governor Andrew Cuomo Signs Marriage Equality Act into Law – Asking Obama to go Cuomo on DOMA!

June 24, 2011, by Melanie Nathan

In thirty days same-sex couples will be able to marry in New York State.  The  Marriage equality Bill was signed into law today mere hours after it was passed by the New York State Senate, in a 33 to 29 vote, exceeding the swing by more than the expected one vote.  New York State does not have residency requirements and so any one from anywhere in the world can legally marry in the state, heralding a boost to the State’s economy by an estimated $200 million per annum.

Religious groups are not required by law to marry same-sex couples under the amendment attached to the bill.

The interesting question will be the one of jurisdiction when out of State couples decide to divorce in State’s where indeed there are residency requirements.

But for now we will not talk divorce as we are ecstatic about the ideal of equality attained in New York State.

As an activist, notwithstanding my excitement at this momentous vote, I would be remiss if I failed to assert this opportunity to remind America and President Obama, that until such time as the Defense of Marriage Act is repealed, same-sex couples do not share federal benefits or rights under th law in parity with heterosexual married couples, regardless of their legal State marriage.

The most onerous of such inequality under the federal law is the fact that if a same-sex couple married legally in New York, (or anywhere else in the U.S.) where one spouse is a foreign national without U.S. residency, the American spouse has no right to sponsor a foreign spouse for a green card.  Immigration rights are attained is under federal law and DOMA specifically excludes same-sex, gay and lesbian couples from the rights that apply to heterosexual couples.

We are urging President Obama to stop the inequity and to go CUOMO on the U.S.


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4 Comments on “New York Governor Andrew Cuomo Signs Marriage Equality Act into Law – Asking Obama to go Cuomo on DOMA!”

  1. Judy Becker June 25, 2011 at 10:34 AM #

    Hi Melanie-I’d like to think this will act to trigger a domino effect for ending DOMA-repealing Prop 8-activating DADT-the US signing the United Nations resolution CEDAW-ratifying ERA…this would be a nice start to get equality to EVERYONE in the U.S….great read…Judy

  2. Janice June 27, 2011 at 9:19 AM #

    My partner is a New Yorker, and there’s is nothing we’d love more than to get married in the Empire State. Being a bi-national couple, we have to wait for the likes of DOMA to be repealed or the UAFA to be passed so she can sponsor me. As soon as we can, we will be hot footing it north to tie the knot.
    I hope the same as Judy that this will be the start of a domino effect, but Obama has to step up and put his actions where his words have been in the past. He wants campaign donations again, then he’s got to take action. The LGBT community is too big as far as donations are concerned to risk losing all that money.
    I am happy for New York, and this is a momentous achievement, but we have a long way to go.

  3. Mike Hester September 12, 2011 at 4:50 AM #

    Hi Melanie – can you advise if foreign same sex Nationals with no intention for residency or a green card can get married in New York. 27 years togther her in Australia and still no chance!!

    Many thanks
    Mike & Mark – Melbourne, Australia

    • oblogdeeoblogda September 19, 2011 at 11:54 AM #

      Yes if you can get a visa into the Country. But I think there is some kind of waiver you need to show you not married elsewhere., Contact me at and I will check it out.

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