After his firework-filled inauguration, David Paterson settled down to quietly work on the state budget and legislative agenda. To many, his most remarkable achievement was to keep Albany going after the colossal damage of Eliot Spitzer's scandal-ridden resignation. But not to the gays. For them, his most shining moment was when he ordered all state agencies to recognize same-sex marriages performed elsewhere. And they had their chance to recognize this feat at yesterday's Gay Pride March. Below, the lede from today's Times story on the governor's love affair with the gays:
If there was ever any doubt that gay people form one of Gov. David A. Paterson’s most loyal and enthusiastic constituencies, that doubt was erased on Sunday by the howl of a drag queen on Fifth Avenue.
The drag queen, standing at the foot of the steps to the New York Public Library dressed in a green Afro wig, a red miniskirt and candy-cane-striped stockings, had the duty of announcing the notables marching down Fifth Avenue in the gay pride march.
She introduced Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and City Council Speaker Christine C. Quinn, and the onlookers who had gathered along the parade route politely applauded.
But when she bellowed, “Let’s hear it for the governor of New York, David Paterson!” the crowd roared.
Paterson said he'd been walking in the march since 1976, back when for a politician, the "howl of a drag queen" was the kind of endorsement that could kill a political career. Back then, he said, people didn't really notice him walking with his gay friends. On Sunday morning, he observed, “I don’t think I’ll be anonymous today.”