The New York Times on Mike Long, chairman of the state's Conservative Party:
“He’s a man of his word, and his handshake is one of the last handshakes completely trusted in New York politics,” said Bruce N. Gyory, a Democratic political consultant and adjunct professor of political science at the University at Albany. “And when he makes a threat, it counts.”
Mr. Long’s opposition has been a source of frustration for same-sex marriage supporters.
... “In order to get the endorsement of the Conservative Party, one of the deal breakers is traditional marriage,” Mr. Long said in an interview last week. “You say ‘I’m not for traditional marriage,’ you’re not going to get our endorsement. It’s as simple as that.”
It is not an idle threat.
... no Republican has won statewide office without the Conservative Party’s support in more than three decades. When Republicans won control of the State Senate last year, five of the Republican candidates won by a margin less than the number of votes they received on the Conservative line.