New York state Senator Mark Grisanti ran as a Catholic Republican opponent of same-sex "marriage" in 2010. In June 2011, he became a key vote ensuring its passage, telling a local newspaper: "If I take the Catholic out of me, which is hard to do, then absolutely they should have these rights."
Richard E. Barnes, Executive Director of the New York Catholic Conference, said Grisanti showed a lack of integrity as a Catholic by "ignoring" the "teachings he knows full well" on the subject of family life.
"Obviously, he's acknowledging that he does understand the Catholic position," Barnes said to CNA on July 8. Grisanti seemed to be "making the assessment that, while it was 'hard to do,' he has 'taken the Catholic out of him' for the purposes of this vote."
"I don't think that a public official should ever 'take the Catholic out' of himself or herself, because Catholic positions are meshed perfectly with public policy positions," said Barnes, who directs public policy advocacy efforts for the New York bishops.
"No person should say that they are a public official and need not live according to the tenets of their faith. And I find it disappointing that he felt he had to do that."
When Sen. Grisanti cast his vote in favor of legalizing gay "marriage," he stated that he could not "deny anyone in my district and across New York the same rights I have with my wife."