GOP senator key to NY gay marriage OK concedes

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) – Republican state Sen. Stephen Saland, who cast the critical vote to legalize gay marriage in New York, has conceded that he lost his re-election bid.
    
The veteran Saland ended a long count of absentee ballots in the Hudson Valley race that included praise from Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo for what he called a courageous vote of conscience.
    
With Saland's decision Thursday, Democrat Terry Gipson is the winner of the 41st Senate District race that was too close to call on election night.
    
Saland has represented the district in Putnam and Dutchess counties for more than 20 years and was among the most respected members of the Senate. He had sponsored important legislation for schools and to combat child abuse.

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