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Published: 04/25/11

Texas May Strip Away Transgender Marriage Rights

By  not in system - AOL News
Texas May Strip Away Transgender Marriage Rights

AUSTIN, Texas -- Two years after Texas become one of the last states to allow transgendered people to use proof of their sex change to get a marriage license, Republican lawmakers are trying to roll back the clock. Advocates for the transgendered say a proposal to bar transgendered people from getting married smacks of discrimination and would put their legally-granted marriages in danger of being nullified if challenged in court. One of the Republican sponsors of the legislation said he's simply trying to clean up the 2009 law in a state that bans same-sex marriage under the...

Published: 04/21/11

Montana Judge Rejects Gay Couple Rights Suit

By  not in system - AOL News
Montana Judge Rejects Gay Couple Rights Suit

HELENA, Mont. -- A Montana judge on Thursday rejected a lawsuit that sought to extend to gay couples the same legal protections as married couples, saying in his decision that he can't grant the benefits partly because of the state's voter-approved constitutional definition of marriage as between a man and a woman. Last year, the American Civil Liberties Union filed the lawsuit on behalf of the gay couples, arguing that the guarantees in the Montana Constitution of equal protection, privacy and dignity should require the state to afford the legal rights to the gay couples. The ACLU said it...

Published: 03/4/11

Speaker Launches Effort to Defend Gay Marriage Ban

By  not in system - AOL News
Speaker Launches Effort to Defend Gay Marriage Ban

WASHINGTON -- House Speaker John Boehner said Friday the House may go to court to defend the federal law against gay marriage, which President Barack Obama's administration has concluded is unconstitutional. Boehner said he would convene a group of bipartisan congressional leaders that has the authority to instruct the House counsel to represent the chamber in court. The panel would include Boehner, Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va.; Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif.; Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi D-Calif., and Minority Whip Steny Hoyer, D-Md. "The constitutionality of this law should...

Published: 03/1/11

House Republicans Plan to Stick Up for Defense of Marriage Law

By  Tom Diemer - Politics Daily
House Republicans Plan to Stick Up for Defense of Marriage Law

The Defense of Marriage Act -- the federal law defining marriage as being between a man and a woman -- has plenty of defenders, but they are up on Capitol Hill, not in the White House. Less than a week after the Obama administration said it would no longer argue in court for a key section of the 1996 law, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor said Republicans would likely enter the legal fray. "I do believe that this case is distinguishable on its merits, and to have . . . the president take the position that he's not defending the law of the land is something very troubling, I think, to most...

Published: 02/25/11

Gay Marriage Decision May Not Hurt Obama or Help the Religious Right

By  David Gibson - Politics Daily
Gay Marriage Decision May Not Hurt Obama or Help the Religious Right

When the Obama administration announced that it would adopt a matador defense on the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), the reaction from conservative Christian activists alternated between rage and celebration that the president had basically allowed the political right a slam dunk for the 2012 campaign. The Justice Department declared that it would no longer argue in court on behalf of a key restriction against gay marriage contained in the law, which effectively gives gay marriage a pass from the executive branch -- and gives the religious right a debating point. Related...

Published: 02/24/11

Opinion Roundup: 4 Questions About Obama's Gay Marriage Decision

By  not in system - AOL News
Opinion Roundup: 4 Questions About Obama's Gay Marriage Decision

The Obama administration is calculating that it will receive little political backlash for its decision to tell the Justice Department to stop prosecuting cases related to the Defense of Marriage Act. Originally, the largely symbolic act was intended to head off the legalization of gay marriage by stating that the definition of marriage is between a man and a woman. From the Atlantic Wire Here's an overview of political implications of the decision (for legal implications of the DOMA reversal visit opinions by Slate's Dahlia Lithwick and The Atlantic's Andrew Cohen): Why...

Published: 02/23/11

Hawaii's Governor Signs Civil Unions Into Law

By  not in system - AOL News
Hawaii's Governor Signs Civil Unions Into Law

HONOLULU -- Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie signed same-sex civil unions into law Wednesday, calling it "a triumph for everyone" that gay and lesbian couples will have the same state rights as married partners. Civil unions in the Rainbow State would start Jan. 1, 2012, making Hawaii the seventh state to permit civil unions or similar legal recognitions for gay couples. Five other states and the District of Columbia allow same-sex marriage. "This bill represents equal rights for everyone in Hawaii, everyone who comes here. This is to me the essence of the aloha spirit," Abercrombie said at a...

Published: 02/23/11

Obama Drops Support for Law That Bans Gay Marriage

By  not in system - AOL News
Obama Drops Support for Law That Bans Gay Marriage

WASHINGTON - In a major policy reversal, the Obama administration said Wednesday that it will no longer defend the constitutionality of a federal law banning recognition of same-sex marriage. Attorney General Eric Holder said President Barack Obama has concluded that the administration cannot defend the federal law that defines marriage as only between a man and a woman. He noted that the congressional debate during passage of the Defense of Marriage Act "contains numerous expressions reflecting moral disapproval of gays and lesbians and their intimate and family relationships - precisely the...

Published: 02/2/11

Zach Wahls' Iowa Speech for Gay Marriage Goes Viral [VIDEO]

By  Steven Hoffer - AOL News
Zach Wahls' Iowa Speech for Gay Marriage Goes Viral [VIDEO]

The Iowa House of Representatives approved a resolution on Tuesday that proposes a constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage in the state. Hundreds of people packed the Iowa State House to debate the issue -- known as House Joint Resolution 6 -- which passed by a 62-37 vote. One of the individuals who spoke was Zach Wahls, a University of Iowa engineering student and the child of a same-sex couple. His three-minute speech against the resolution is going viral across the Internet, much like Fort Worth, Texas, City Councilman Joel Burns' "It Gets Better" speech did during...

Published: 02/1/11

Barbara Bush Comes Out for Gay Marriage, and Twitter (Mostly) Applauds [VIDEO]

By  Torie Bosch - AOL News
Barbara Bush Comes Out for Gay Marriage, and Twitter (Mostly) Applauds [VIDEO]

Barbara Bush -- the twin daughter of former President George W. Bush -- has caused quite the stir today. In a video from the Human Rights Campaign, a gay rights organization, the brunette twin announces her support for the New Yorkers for Marriage Equality campaign. Watch: Just 22 seconds long, that video has sure got a lot of people talking. On Twitter, the overwhelming reaction is positive, with people cheering Barbara for breaking ranks with her father, who was famously opposed to gay marriage. .bbpBox32451867472564224...

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