Grisanti Explains 'Yes' Vote on Gay Marriage

June 27, 2011 Updated Jun 27, 2011 at 11:25 PM EDT

By WKBW News

June 27, 2011 Updated Jun 27, 2011 at 11:25 PM EDT

Buffalo (WKBW) It was a historic vote that legalized same sex marriage in New York State, and it happened in part because of a Senator from right here in Buffalo. Now State Senator Mark Grisanti is speaking out, and explaining how he voted and why.

After a speech that explained his thoughts in front of the NYS Senate late Friday night, Senator Mark Grisanti closed with the words "I vote in the affirmative Mr. President."

With that, Grisanti left his mark on the Marriage Equality Act, with a vote crossing party lines, and helping to pass the bill legalizing same sex marriage in New York.

"It wasn't a political decision, so you have to let the chips fall as they may," Grisanti said at a news conference Monday. He spoke about how he came to his decision, and ultimately why he voted in favor of the bill.

"I feel like I've made the right decision. I'm happy with that decision, and I'm not looking at the future. Whatever happens, happens. I don't make those political decisions based on what lines people get or don't get. It's not really important to me. That's not what decided this vote," Grisanti said.

Now that the bill has passed, religious groups have already taken sides. The Catholic church remains against performing same sex marriages, while others like Unitarian Universalist Church have performed gay marriages for years, only now they come with state protections.

Reverend Joel Miller is the pastor of Unitarian Universalist.

"It's very rewarding for us. We've worked hard for these rights for all of our members for a long time. So this just feels like a wonderful success to us. We're proud of our state for giving everyone equal access to the marriage laws of New York, and the protection of marriage here in New York," Miller said.

Amid the fallout, Senator Grisanti says he sticks with his vote, even though he didn't end up being the single swing vote as had been expected.

"If that was the case, I still would've voted the same way," Grisanti said.

Senator Grisanti also apologized to constituents that he may have disappointed with his vote. When asked if he would ever consider running for office as a Democrat, after his vote cost him some republican support, Grisanti said he wasn't even thinking about it, but did not rule it out completely.

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