Gay marriage bill tabled; showdown looms

(AP) - After a day of more closed-doornegotiations, the state Senate left unsettled a bill to legalizegay marriage, setting up a pivotal showdown Wednesday as lawmakerslook to end the legislative session and national groups look for asign of things to come on the divisive issue.

The vote in the Legislature is seen as a criticalmoment in the national debate over same-sex marriage.

The Assembly has already passed Gov. Andrew Cuomo's (D-N.Y.) bill, and the issue appears to be one vote shy from approval in theSenate, if the Republican caucus which mostly opposes gay marriageallows the measure to the floor for a vote.

The effort to legalize same-sex marriage largely stalled twoyears ago when the state Senate voted it down. Since then, themovement has failed in Maryland, New Jersey, and Rhode Island.Advocates hope a "yes" vote in New York will jumpstart theeffort.

On Tuesday, Albany's backroom dealing cleared the way for thepossible Wednesday vote.

After an expected marathon session Tuesday to pass a mega dealinvolving tax, tuition and other issues, the Republican-led Senatenow will be able to focus on whether to release a gay marriage billto the floor for a vote.

The state's legislative session had been scheduled to end Monday.

State Senate Republicans put off vote on same-sex marriage billLI gay-rights advocates await same-sex marriage voteNY Assembly passes gay marriage bill

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