New York legislators have defeated a same-sex marriage bill and the vote was not as close as many people expected.
Thirty-eight state senators opposed the legislation and only 24 supported it.
New York senators who supported the same-sex marriage measure overcame major hurdles to get the issue to the floor of the state senate. But in the end, the majority vote to defeat the bill was overwhelming. And senators crossed racial, ethnic, and party lines to do it.
Sen. Ruben Diaz, a pastor of the Christian Community Neighborhood Church in the Bronx, is among the 38 lawmakers who helped defeat the measure.
The Pentecostal pastor argued he could not check his Christianity at the door.
"I am the church. I am the state. How can I separate myself from myself?," he explained. "When I come through that door, I leave my Bible outside. Don't please, don't. That's a wrong statement to say. The Bible should never be left out."
The debate was also emotional for senators on the opposing side. Sen. Thomas Duane, an openly gay member of the New York State Senate, introduced the bill.
"It would make me equal in every way to everyone in this chamber," Duane said.
Supporters of traditional marriage are hoping the New York vote will send a message next door to New Jersey -- where leaders are considering taking up the issue as well.
CBN News recently spoke with Rev. Jason McGuire, executive director of New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms.
"Part of our strategy was, we knew if we could hold the line here in New York that we could effectively block same sex marriage in two states," McGuire said. "And I think we've done that. We sent a message to New York, but also a message to a lot of New Jersey who are watching what happens here."
It's possible that the bill could come up again before New York legislators. But next year is an election year, so it may be a long time before the issue is raised again in the Empire State.