Friday, November 14, 2008
Birthplace: Bronx, NY
Claim To Fame: New York State Assemblyman
Why He's Conservative of the Week: for his refusal to back any Democrat candidate who will allow an initiative on gay marriage onto the floor of the State Senate. Senator Diaz Sr. who also happens to be a Pentecostal minister, is threatening (along with fellow Assemblymen Carl Krueger and Pedro Espada Jr.) to caucus with NY Republicans on the issue if current liberal Democrat minority leader Malcolm Smith brings it to the floor as Smith has said he will do.
With gay marriage having just been approved in neighboring Connecticut and with a governor who has publicly supported it, liberals are now trying to get New York to become the first state to approve gay marriage without court intervention. However, Diaz's intention is to try to take the issue out of the hands of state lawmakers by turning the matter into a ballot initiative and putting marriage equality rights to a popular vote. In all likelihood (as seen with last week's measures in California, Florida and Arizona) a popular vote would deny gay marriage being allowed in the state and open a window for marriage to be defined as only for a man and woman. Props to Ruben Diaz Sr. for taking on such a strong, moral stance.