McDonald_PhotoCreditChrisPreovolosAndrew J. McDonald became the first openly gay justice of the Connecticut Supreme Court today. The General Assembly confirmed the former state senator by a vote of 30-3 in the Senate and 125-20 in the House.

McDonald was elected in 2002 to serve Connecticut’s 27th district as a state senator. During his tenure in the legislature, he served as Senate Chair of the Judiciary Committee and was an advocate for marriage equality and transgender rights. McDonald was a key player in passing the civil unions bill in 2005, which led to the Supreme Court ruling that granted same-sex couples the freedom to marry in 2008. He remained a key leader in the state senate until 2011, when he resigned to serve as Gov. Dan Malloy’s chief legal counsel.

A Democrat, McDonald failed to win the votes of three Republican senators, but the Connecticut Mirror reports, “Other Republicans rose to defend McDonald, praising his intelligence and temperament.”

Photo: Chris Preovolos