The New York State Legislature voted this week to legalize gay marriage, a measure hurriedly signed into law by Governor Andrew Cuomo late Friday night.
The gay marriage law takes effect in 30 days.
In one of the highest profile celebrity responses, actor Neil Patrick Harris immediately and officially proposed to longtime partner David Burtka.
“It PASSED! Marriage equality in NY!! Yes!! Progress!! Thank you everyone who worked so hard on this!! A historic night!” Patrick Harris tweeted late Friday night.
The two had been planning for years to marry as soon as it was legal in New York. The couple plans a blowout wedding.
“This is going to be as traditional as it gets. We’re going to do it at the Four Seasons, a place that is like gay church to me,” he told the Associated Press.
The bill faced opposition from conservative and religious groups, but in the end, the right to marry rode a wave of progressiveness that has swept through New England but has not reached California.
In Arizona, Phoenix-based gay rights group Equality Arizona hopes the New York vote will help the passage of gay marriage there.
The group has a major uphill battle, as the state already voted to make gay marriage illegal in 2008, and the state is run by a conservative governor.
Outside the historically liberal New York City, more than 100 people gathered in Syracuse in upstate New York, to celebrate the vote.
“The victory we had last night was one of love and justice,” Mark Spadafore told the gathered crowd outside First English Lutheran Church, according to a report in The Post-Standard newspaper. “Enjoy today, enjoy this moment. We won! We won!…We won, but we have more work to do.”
But gay marriage is still without support at the very top of the country. President Barack Obama said he favors equal rights for gay couples, but he is not an advocate for legalizing gay marriage.