Paterson Ascension A ‘Blessing’?

The political air’s a-cracklin’ today!

As the Democrats prepare to duke it out in the Mississippi primaries, New York Governor Eliot Spitzer’s still in limbo. Will the former attorney general crusader resign following revelations that he had multiple encounters with a prostitute?

The calls for his head are growing louder by the second, and many say that resignation’s imminent, thus leaving Albany open for Lt. Gov. David Paterson’s ascension.

Black and blind, Paterson’s no stranger to adversity. And no stranger to pro-gay activism…

Sure, Spitzer ran on a marriage platform, but it’s Paterson who has the real political balls. As The Advocate‘s forward-thinking Kerry Eleveld points out, Paterson’s been a queer crusader since his early days, refusing to sign an exclusionary hate crimes law back in 1987 and supporting gay marriage in 1994. And he’s stuck to his guns, leading one activist to equate a Paterson Governorship with a “blessing”.

The New York Blade spoke with Paterson following his 2007 inauguration, asking him if he would be a part of the gay marriage battle. His response:

I’m not going to be in that fight — I’m going to be in front of that fight because my first day as [senate minority leader] was the day we passed the Sexual Orientation Non-Discrimination Act. One of the reasons we need same-sex marriage is because the statistics for heterosexual marriage are so bad; that might be a way to upgrade some of the success rates.

That’s an especially timely quote considering his colleague’s current troubles…