U.S. Congressman to marry same-sex partner
Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney gets ceremonially sworn in by House Speaker John Boehner while Maloney's longtime partner, Randy Florke, holding the Bible in January 2013. The couple's three kids are also shown.
January 13th, 2014
07:35 PM ET
9 years ago

U.S. Congressman to marry same-sex partner

Washington (CNN) - Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney, D-New York, will marry his longtime partner, designer Randy Florke, the couple announced Monday.

"After 21 years together, we are excited for the next step in our journey as a family," they said in a statement. "For decades, we've fought to ensure that all families can experience the joys of loving commitment and we are proud to have our friends and family share this special moment with us in the near future."

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With their marriage, Maloney will become the second member of Congress to legally wed his same-sex partner while in office. Former Rep. Barney Frank, D-Massachusetts, became the first to do so in 2012.

Maloney and Florke, who have three adopted children and live in Cold Spring, New York, got engaged on Christmas Day.

Their youngest daughter, Essie, wrote a letter to Santa earlier that week, asking if he can "try making my wonder-ful fathers get married."

"They are a loving couple!" she added. Little did she know a proposal had already been planned, and Florke popped the question to Maloney just days later.

Essie Letter to Santa

Maloney and Florke first met in 1992 while standing in line at a dance club in New York City. It was Maloney's first day in the Big Apple, where he was apartment hunting.

Maloney went on to serve as a senior adviser in President Bill Clinton's second term and as a senior staff member to New York Govs. Eliot Spitzer and David Paterson. He also ran for New York Attorney General in 2006 but lost to now-Gov. Andrew Cuomo in the Democratic primary.

Now a first-term congressman, Maloney defeated incumbent Republican Nan Hayworth in New York's 18th Congressional District in 2012.

Maloney, however, won't be the only member of Congress in a same-sex marriage.

Rep. Mark Pocan, D-Wisconsin, married his husband in Canada in 2006 but was elected to Congress in 2012. While their marriage is not recognized in Wisconsin, it's recognized on the federal level after last year's Supreme Court decision to strike down a key part of the Defense Of Marriage Act.

Maloney and Florke did not announce a date or say where they plan to get married.

Filed under: Congress • New York • Same-sex marriage
soundoff (5 Responses)
  1. Thomas

    House Speaker John Boehner looks so happy !

    January 13, 2014 07:43 pm at 7:43 pm |
  2. Liz the First

    Congrats to Rep. Maloney and his partner. hope they have many more happy years together. and i hope some of his colleagues in the House someday realize that 'family values' means valuing ALL families. how many of them who are on their second or third wife in the years these two men have been a loving, committed family, will condemn them?

    January 13, 2014 07:59 pm at 7:59 pm |
  3. sonnie3

    Morality in Congress is heading for the gutter. Lord help us.

    January 14, 2014 04:35 am at 4:35 am |
  4. Charles

    Good fr them. i hope they have all the happiness God has meant for families to have.

    January 14, 2014 07:06 am at 7:06 am |
  5. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Congrtulations to the happy family.

    January 14, 2014 07:56 am at 7:56 am |