2008_10_ernie.jpgThe issue of gay marriage may once again be enough of a deciding factor to turn the tide in a big election year. This time though it's in small fights for state senate seats here in New York that are seeing heavy donations come in from gay rights advocates. With only two seats needed to swing control of the senate over to Democrats and Governor Paterson's open support for legalizing gay marriage, advocates believe that "this is the year for New York" as openly gay Senator Tom Duane tells the NY Times. The paper says that upwards of $500,000 is quietly coming into small, tight races in places like Rochester, suburban Buffalo and out in Suffolk County from sources all over the country. A Republican spokesman for the state senate responded to all this by saying that “national, left-wing agenda” has no place in the New York Senate races.