Governor Paterson has consistently stated his desire to see a bill legalizing same-sex marriage voted on regardless of whether its passage is assured. On this, Senate Majority Leader Malcolm Smith, another supporter of same-sex marriage, disagrees, preferring to secure the votes first. Smith won out in this battle of wills because it’s simply his call, and Paterson continues to have as much political clout as a county assessor. But a new poll shows that, for what it’s worth, a vast majority of New Yorkers 78 percent agree with Paterson, despite the fact that they’re split 46 percent to 46 percent on the actual question of gay marriage. Apparently, people are under the assumption that government is supposed to function in the way they learned about it in textbooks introduce a bill, debate it in the open, and vote on it. So naïve.