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Is it smart for Republicans to vote for gay marriage?

New York Republicans who voted for marriage rights are facing tight primary races
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If you're a Republican who wants to vote for gay marriage legislation, it might be a good idea to reconsider.

This week,  Republican state senators from New York who gave their vote for gay marriage faced difficult primary races. The Daily Beast wonders if this is a sign GOP politicians, even of they want, should steer away from supporting gay marriage.

'Can a Republican vote gay—and stay in office,' Daily Beast writer David Freedlander asks. 'That’s the question rattling around New York political circles today after a state primary that saw three of the four GOP state senators who flipped their votes and provided the crucial margin to bring marriage equality to the Empire State squeak by with the narrowest of margins—if that—in their first time facing the voters since the bill passed.'

In 2011 June the state's Senate passed a marriage equality bill with the help of Republicans Roy McDonald, Steven Saland, Mark Grisanti, and Jim Alesi. Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed the legislation, but before his signature was dry anti-gay marriage advocates promised to go after those four. In this week's primary races--the general elections will be held in November--  McDonald trails his opponent by approximately 130 votes; Saland is up by 42. Grisanti won easily and Alesi retired. There will be recounts in the McDonald and Saland elections.

'The message we sent was pretty simple,' Brian Brown, executive director of the National Organization of Marriage, said to the Daily Beast. 'If you are a Republican and you vote for [gay] marriage, you are going to lose.'

NOM is the leading anti-marriage equality organization in the US.

Gay marriage advocates caution these results might have to do with other local issues removed from the marriage debate. They add, however, the struggle for gay unions will have set backs, just like every other freedom movement in the US.

'The fight for freedom and equality has never been easy,' Alan Van Capelle,  former head of Empire State Pride Agenda, said to the Daily Beast . 'I don’t know of a single fight for justice and equality that hasn’t involved sacrifice.'

The Empire State Pride Agenda is a LGBT civil rights and advocacy organization.

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