Thomas Duane has decided to not run for reelection to the New York state Senate. Duane, who is openly gay, lead the fight to pass same-sex marriage in New York. He stated that “I always knew that I was going to have another chapter in my life, and it’s time for me to start that new chapter.” The Democrat has spent 14 years in the Legislature, and is just tired of commuting.
Duane, who is 57, stated that “It’s not that Albany isn’t a lovely place, but it’s not home.”
Duane began thinking about retiring when he and his partner Louis Webre attended the wedding of NYC Council Speaker Christine Quinn and Kim Catullo. The former stockbroker grew up in Flushing, Queens, and was elected to the City Council in 1991. He was elected to the state Senate in 1998. He has served his whole political career after announcing that he is HIV positive.
Democratic Conference leader Senator John Sampson said that Duane will be missed. Sampson stated “All of our past and current colleagues owe Tom a tremendous debt of gratitude for his hard work and leadership in the struggle for true equal rights for all New Yorkers.”