Video: Same-sex couples exchange vows across NY state
Transcript of: Same-sex couples exchange vows across NY state
HOLT: mentioned, the world will be watching how the Asian markets might react to all this. You can find live coverage on cnbc.com starting at 7:30 Eastern time .
LESTER HOLT, anchor: Wedding bells rang in this Sunday across the state of New York where same-sex marriage became officially legal today. Earlier this month, lawmakers made New York the sixth and largest state to OK gay nuptials. NBC 's Michelle Franzen is live at the New York City clerk's office where the wedding business
was brisk today. Michelle: Well, Lester , those back-to-back ceremonies started early this morning and wrapped up some eight hours later. Hundreds of same-sex couples saying their vows and making history along the way.
MICHELLE FRANZEN reporting: ...of the state of New York , I pronounce you a married couple under the state of New York laws.
Unidentified Judge: Making it official. Michael Elsasser and Doug Robinson were among the first couples married in New York City today, the first day same-sex marriage became law in New York state . Together more than 25 years, they shared the moment with their two grown sons as their witnesses.
FRANZEN: And we're so happy that they can be with us.
Mr. DOUGLAS ROBINSON: New York City ushered in the biggest wave of newlyweds. Officials say out of the more than 800 who applied to get married today, 659 picked up their licenses. In Manhattan , Meredith Soffrin and Tiffany Peckosh waited five hours before making their debut as a married couple.
FRANZEN: This is the most amazing day for New York . It's just a celebration of love and history.
Ms. MEREDITH SOFFRIN: City council speaker Christine Quinn wiped tears watching the first ceremonies and called it a victory for equal rights.
FRANZEN: Today those families were told they matter and that the state of New York cares about them as much as anybody else.
Ms. CHRISTINE QUINN: Inside the clerk's office, organized chaos.
FRANZEN: And you have all your witnesses and everyone with you?
Unidentified Woman #1: Yes.
Unidentified Woman #2: Volunteers helped couples wade through the process, even judges donated their time.
FRANZEN: It's quite extraordinary, it's a historic day.
Ms. SHERRY KLEIN HEITLER (New York First Judicial District Judge): Weddings in New York began at midnight with Niagara Falls as a backdrop.
FRANZEN: I keep thinking that -- I -- it just -- it's not real.
Unidentified Woman #3: Back in New York City , protesters also exercised their rights, but that didn't dampen the festive atmosphere. A collective celebration along with the powerful, personal moments of saying I do. And tonight another ceremony taking place here in the city. New York City 's Mayor Michael Bloomberg will officiate the wedding of his longtime chief policy adviser and his partner at Gracie Mansion . Lester :
FRANZEN: Michelle Franzen in New York