May 19, 2012
The two brides — one in a cream-colored pantsuit, the other in a floor-sweeping gown — walked down the aisle to the strains of Beyoncé and Bruce Springsteen.
In a room bedecked with wildflowers, and sprinkled with a who’s who of New York elected officials, Christine C. Quinn, the speaker of the New York City Council and a leading candidate to be mayor, married her longtime partner, Kim M. Catullo, on Saturday evening, in one of the most prominent same-sex weddings of a public official to date.
The wedding, coming a year after the legalization of same-sex marriage in New York State and a year before a mayoral election in which Ms. Quinn is aiming to be the Democratic nominee, has been the buzz of New York political circles in recent weeks and has brought Ms. Quinn the kind of celebrity-style coverage rarely enjoyed by a local candidate for office. As she has talked about the fun of trying on dresses and the stress of writing her wedding vows, it has also provided her an opportunity to soften her sometimes tough image and to remind New Yorkers that she would be both the first female and the first openly gay New York City mayor.
The wedding took place in the early evening at the Highline Stages, an event space in the meatpacking district, before an audience of nearly 300 guests, including friends and family as well as dozens of prominent officials. Among those in attendance were Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo; Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg; New York’s two senators, Kirsten E. Gillibrand and Charles E. Schumer; New York City’s police commissioner, Raymond W. Kelly; the first deputy mayor, Patricia Harris; and several members of New York’s congressional delegation, including Charles B. Rangel, Joseph Crowley, Carolyn B. Maloney, Jerrold Nadler and Nydia M. Velázquez. There were also several members of the New York State Legislature and a dozen members of the City Council.
Ms. Quinn and Ms. Catullo, both 45, walked down the aisle on the arms of their fathers. Ms. Quinn was wearing a sleeveless gown by Carolina Herrera with a beaded waistband, Ms. Catullo a made-to-measure cream-colored Ralph Lauren suit. Ms. Quinn’s bright red hair was pulled back with a hair comb that she had had made from two enamel brooches that had belonged to her mother, pansies with a little diamond in the center of each.
Audra McDonald, the Tony Award-winning actress and star of the Broadway musical “Porgy & Bess,” sang George and Ira Gershwin’s song “He Loves and She Loves,” with a slight tweak to the lyrics. The couple played a video they had made about their relationship, in which they talked about having bonded, soon after meeting a decade ago, over having both lost their mothers to cancer as teenagers. In her vows, Ms. Quinn said that she could not imagine life without Ms. Catullo.
New York’s former chief judge, Judith S. Kaye, who in 2006 wrote an impassioned dissent to a court ruling rejecting the right of same-sex couples to marry, officiated. According to guests, when she pronounced the words — “In accordance with the laws of the State of New York, and the authority that has been vested in me by the people of the State of New York, I pronounce you completely, absolutely and permanently married” — the crowd stood up and burst into applause.
“It’s an incredibly personal moment, but it’s just also very powerful in terms of progress we’re making here in America toward equal justice,” the New York State attorney general, Eric T. Schneiderman, said afterward.
“Walking down the aisle was very emotional, and the video was a real hoot,” said Jimmy Van Bramer, a councilman from Queens who attended the wedding with his partner, Dan Hendrick, whom he plans to marry in July. “But it also really revealed who they are and why they love each other.”
After the ceremony, guests dined on a buffet dinner of spring pea risotto, roast chicken and grilled swordfish. Everyone, including both New York senators — though not the mayor and the governor, who had left — joined the first dance, to Neil Diamond’s “I’m a Believer.”
In addition to the cake, which was five tiers of chocolate chip and chocolate custard layers, covered in white chocolate butter cream icing, guests were also treated to a surprise: The Big Gay Ice Cream Truck, which offers flavors including “Bea Arthur,” drove up to the sidewalk outside to offer the crowd ice cream cones and milk shakes.
Ms. Quinn met Ms. Catullo, a products liability lawyer, in 2001, when they were set up by mutual friends. Last year, as Governor Cuomo was leading a push to legalize same-sex marriage, Ms. Quinn traveled to Albany to personally lobby lawmakers, invoking her and Ms. Catullo’s wish to marry while their fathers were still alive. When the bill passed, Ms. Quinn described the experience as “one of the best feelings I have ever had in my life.”
Ms. Quinn and her advisers took a cautious approach to dealing with public interest in the wedding. On Saturday, no news media were allowed inside, but Ms. Quinn’s staff gave out several photographs, as well as details about the décor and what the couple were wearing.
In a sign of how much attention the wedding has captured, by late afternoon Saturday a phalanx of television cameras was stationed on the sidewalk outside the entrance to the venue.
Mr. Schumer, speaking to reporters, who were penned behind a police barricade, said that that the country was “moving fast” on the issue of same-sex marriage, adding, “It’s not a question of if but when — everywhere.”
using the number/letter grid:
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
A B C D E F G H I
J K L M N O P Q R
S T U V W X Y Z
A = 1 J = 1 S = 1
B = 2 K = 2 T = 2
C = 3 L = 3 U = 3
D = 4 M = 4 V = 4
E = 5 N = 5 W = 5
F = 6 O = 6 X = 6
G = 7 P = 7 Y = 7
H = 8 Q = 8 Z = 8
I = 9 R = 9
Christine Callaghan Quinn
her primary need = C+C+Q = 3+3+8 = 14 = Tolerance.
Christine Quinn was born on July 25th, 1966 according to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christine_Quinn
July 25th, 1966
7 + 25 +1+9+6+6 = 54 = her life lesson = Bi-curious.
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