Senator Huntley's Challenger Picks Up Supoprt

An openly gay Democratic City Councilman in Queens just endorsed a challenger to Democratic State Senator Shirley Huntley, one of the people who voted against-same sex marriage.

The Councilman, Jimmy Van Bramer of Sunnyside, said he’s support Lynn Nunes because “his commitment to reform and equality for all make Lynn the right choice for Southeast Queens and the right choice for New York.”

Lynn is challenging Huntley -- herself once favored by progressives and the Democratic establishment because she ousted the controversial Ada Smith. But now, Huntley is drawing fire from progressives for voting against same-sex marriage.

The endorsement announcement comes one day after same-sex marriage advocates cheered the overturn of a gay marriage ban in California (it’s likely to wind up, at some point, in the Supreme Court).

Since being voted down last year, the landscape for passing same-sex marriage in New York has improved, slightly.

A couple of Democratic State Senators who voted against same-sex marriage last year have been replaced by supporters.

In Queens, for example, Democratic State Senators who voted against the bill include Joe Addabbo, Hiram Monserrate and George Onorato. Monserrate was removed and replaced by Assemblyman Jose Peralta. Onorato announced he’s retiring, and is expected to be replaced by Assemblyman Michael Gianaris. Both Peralta and Gianaris voted for same-sex marriage while in the Assembly.

But, as Liz Benjamin noted, the issue may not be coming up for a vote in the State Senate any time soon.

Huntley has $45,927 on hand for her campaign. Challenger Nunes has $115,114.