The New York State Senate
is one of two houses in the New York State Legislature
and has members each elected to two-year terms. There are no limits on the number of terms one may serve. The New York Constitution
provides for a varying number of members in the Senate; the current membership is 62, elected from single-member constituencies equal in population.
The Senate is headed by its President, a post held ex officio
by the Lieutenant Governor
. The Senate President has a casting vote
in the event of a tie, but otherwise may not vote. More often, the Senate is presided over by the Temporary President
, a post which is normally also held by the Majority Leader. After the 2008 elections, the Senate had a Democratic
majority for the first time since 1965. They lost that majority on November 2, 2010, when Republican Jack Martins defeated Democratic Senator Craig Johnson. Following the defections of Jeffrey Klein
, David Valesky
and Diane Savino
from the Democratic caucus, the trio will join freshman David Carlucci
in a newly formed Independent Conference separate from the Democratic and Republican conferences.
The Senate has one additional member outside those who are elected by the people: the Secretary of the New York State Senate is a post that is chosen by a majority vote of the senators, and does not have voting power (he/she is allowed, though officially discouraged, from discussing and... Read More