US: Judge opens up same-sex marriage in one Florida county

Same-sex couples in Monroe County, Florida, will soon be able to marry Share on WhatsApp 0 reader comments

A judge in the Florida Keys has ruled in favour of same-sex marriage, overturning its constitutional ban on same-sex marriage.

The ruling by Circuit Judge Luis M Garcia, and comes after a legal challenge to Florida’s same-sex marriage ban by six gay couples.

The couples argued that while they were banned from marrying, they were considered second class citizens.

Judge Garcia’s ruling only applies to Monroe County, which includes Florida Keys.

Florida’s same-sex marriage ban was approved by voters in 2008, but the lawsuit argues that it violates same-sex couples’ guarantee of equal protection under the law, as dictated by the US Constitution.

Attorney general Pam Bondi, and supporters of the ban, argued that the amendment should be respected, because it was voter approved. Bondi argued that the state has the authority to define marriage there.

Same-sex couples could begin to receive marriage licences from Tuesday.

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US: Utah asks for US Supreme Court to block ruling to recognise same-sex marriages

The letter was sent by Governor Gary Herbert Share on WhatsApp 0 reader comments

The US state of Utah has asked the US Supreme Court in an emergency appeal to block a ruling instructing the state to recognise the marraiges of hundreds of same-sex couples in the state.

Over 1000 gay couples married in the state, where same-sex marriage was legalised for 17 days after a judge ruled in December that the state’s marriage ban is unconstitutional.

However, on January 6, the US Supreme Court stayed the ruling, putting the marriage ban back in place and causing some to doubt the legality of the marriages.

The 10th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled last week that the state must begin to recognise those marriages, despite the ongoing battle over marriage equality.

On Wednesday state officials filed the emergency appeal, asking the US Supreme Court to block the ruling by the appeals court, saying recognising those marriages would be too disruptive.

The appeal was addressed to Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor, and was sent by Governor Gary Herbert and Attorney General Sean Reyes.

It said ordering the state to recognise the marriages was “premature and unwarranted.”

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Utah Asks SCOTUS For Stay In Case Recognizing Same-Sex Marriages

The office of Utah’s attorney general has filed an emergency petition to the U.S. Supreme Court seeking a stay on a ruling that the state must legally recognize same-sex marriages performed while gay marriage was briefly legal in the state.

If granted the stay, the state would have more time to prepare its appeal to the high court. The existing stay on the ruling expires on July 21.

Last week, the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals denied Utah’s attempt to block recognition of 1,300 same-sex marriages that were performed while the state’s ban was lifted last December.

Reuters reports:

Utah refused to confer legal recognition of gay and lesbian marriages performed in the interim, leaving those couples unable to proceed with adoptions, obtain spousal health insurance benefits or legally change their names.

Four newlywed same-sex couples then filed a separate lawsuit to get the state to recognize their marital status, winning a decision in May from another federal judge that their marriages were valid. But that judge also temporarily stayed his own ruling to let Utah petition for a lengthier injunction pending appeal.

The 10th Circuit on Friday denied that request for a permanent injunction.

In the petition for the emergency hold, state officials claimed that “there is a likelihood

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Macedonia: Parliament approves constitutional same-sex marriage ban

The country’s parliament has passed a same-sex marriage ban Share on WhatsApp 14 reader comments

The Macedonian Assembly has approved a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage.

The governing conservatives began the process to amend the constitution today, following their April election victory, which netted enough seats to secure a two-thirds majority vote.

The amendment would define marriage as exclusively a heterosexual union, between one man and one woman.

Government spokesperson Aleksandar Gjorgjiev, of the VMRO-DPMNE party, said: “The constitutional protection and the clear defining of marriage will allow further protection of children and affirmation of their upbringing in a family atmosphere in which the main pillars are the parents, the father and mother.”

The country’s Pride parade was cancelled last year, following safety concerns and a rise in the number of homophobic attacks.

Macedonian president Gjorge Ivanov, has previously claimed that discrimination against lesbian and gay people is a myth.

He claimed: “Our system discriminates against no-one. Homosexuals stigmatise themselves and think they are in an underprivileged position.

“In general, I support the pluralism of life styles of the subculture groups

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US: Democrats in Wisconsin ask state to cease defence of same-sex marriage ban

The letter asks Governor Scott Walker to stop defending the ban Share on WhatsApp 0 reader comments

Democrats in the US state of Wisconsin have asked the state’s Attorney General and Governor to cease their defence of a law banning same-sex couples from marrying.

US District Judge Barbara Crabb struck down the state’s same-sex marriage ban on Friday 6 June, leading to some counties issuing marriage licences immediately, and allowing more than 500 gay and lesbian couples to wed.

However, after Attorney General JB Van Hollen appealed, on Friday 13 June Crabb agreed to halt her ruling, stopping all new marriages until the appeal concludes. Last Thursday, Van Hollen finally filed his appeal. 

Now 15 state senators have written to Van Hollen and Governor Scott Walker, urging them to cease their defence of the ban, stating that they are wasting taxpayer money in doing so.

According to reports, a spokesperson for the Van Hollen states that he is doing his job in defending the ban.

Arguments in the case will be heard on 13 August in Chicago.

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US: Arkansas couples ask federal judge to strike down state’s same-sex marriage ban

Arkansas attorneys for two same sex couples have asked a federal judge to rule on the state’s same-sex marriage ban Share on WhatsApp 0 reader comments

Attorneys for two same-sex couples asked an Arkansas federal judge Wednesday to order the striking down of the state’s same-sex marriage ban.

The attorneys requested a summary judgment, asking US District Judge Kristine Baker to rule the state’s constitutional amendment which outlaws same-sex marriage, and any other related laws, unconstitutional.

The lawsuit filed by the couples against the state was submitted last year before the state’s same-sex marriage ban was struck down, only to be reinstated.

On 9 May 2014, Judge Chris Piazza found that the state’s ban was unconstitutional, stating it was

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Tory Baroness Stowell who guided same-sex marriage through Lords, promoted in reshuffle

Tina Stowell was promoted to Leader of the House of Lords Share on WhatsApp 3 reader comments

Baroness Stowell of Beeston, the Tory peer who was in charge of guiding the same-sex marriage bill for England and Wales through the House of Lords, has been promoted to Leader of the House of Lords and Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster.

Baroness Stowell, the former Head of Corporate Affairs for the BBC, was last year made a junior minister at the Department for Communities and Local Government.

During today’s reshuffle, Baroness Stowell was promoted to Leader of the House of Lords, as well as Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster.

The appointment was confirmed in a tweet from Prime Minister David Cameron.

Baroness Tina Stowell is the new Leader of the House of Lord and Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster. #Reshuffle

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