Marriage Equality

Since 2000, 16 countries (Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Denmark, France, Iceland, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Spain, South Africa, Sweden, United Kingdom, Uruguay) have legalized same-sex marriage, as have parts of Mexico. In the United Kingdom, the law legalizing same-sex marriage in England and Wales takes effect March 29, 2014.

In the United States, same-sex marriage is legal in 17 states (California, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois*, Iowa, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington), and in the District of Columbia. (*Illinois same-sex marriage law takes effect on June 1, 2014. Same-sex marriage was legal in Utah for 17 days following federal court ruling striking down that state’s gay marriage ban. Marriage equality in Utah is on hold pending appeal.)

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Maryland couples await 2013 as marriage equality law takes effect at 12:01 a.m.

Monday, December 31, 2012
Same-sex couples in Maryland are eagerly awaiting the New Year, as at 12:01 a.m. Tuesday, the state's new marriage equality law takes effect. [ Read more → ]
Cardinal Francis George

Chicago’s Cardinal Francis George: Same-sex marriage ‘violates natural law’

Sunday, December 30, 2012
With Illinois state lawmakers poised to consider a marriage equality bill in the lame duck session that begins Wednesday, Catholic bishops and other advocates of "traditional" are taking a new approach: same-sex marriage simply violates natural law. [ Read more → ]
Gordon Fox

Rhode Island House Speaker to call for early vote on marriage equality

Sunday, December 30, 2012
The Rhode Island General Assembly kicks off its 2013 session Tuesday, and the first big debate of the year is likely to center on same-sex marriage. [ Read more → ]
Jesse Tyler Ferguson

‘Modern Family’s’ Jesse Tyler Ferguson to lobby for Ill. same-sex marriage bill

Sunday, December 30, 2012
As state lawmakers prepare to vote on a bill that would legalize same-sex marriage in Illinois, support has come in from coalitions of LGBT rights organizations, voters, hundreds of local clergy, President Obama — and now — from ABC’s Modern Family star Jesse Tyler Ferguson. [ Read more → ]
Barack Obama

Obama urges Illinois lawmakers to legalize same-sex marriage

Saturday, December 29, 2012
President Barack Obama on Saturday urged the Illinois General Assembly to vote in favor of legalizing same-sex marriage in his home state. [ Read more → ]
Steven Bridges (left), and Michael-SnellImage via WCSH-TV, Portland, Maine.

‘All you need is love’ — Maine latest U.S. state to legalize same-sex marriage

Saturday, December 29, 2012
PORTLAND, Maine -- Same-sex couples in Maine began exchanging wedding vows shortly after midnight on Saturday as the state's new marriage equality law took effect. Maine becomes the eighth U.S. state to legalize marriage equality for gay and lesbian couples. [ Read more → ]

Maine to start issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples at midnight

Friday, December 28, 2012
In just hours, the city clerk's office in Portland, Maine, will begin issuing the state's first marriage licenses to same-sex couples, as Maine becomes the first state to legalize marriage equality by a popular vote of its citizens. [ Read more → ]
David E. Smith

Ill. hate group leader: ‘There are no round triangles, and no gay marriages’

Friday, December 28, 2012
Just as there are "no round triangles," there are "no gay marriages." So says David E. Smith, executive director of the Illinois Family Institute, the anti-gay organization working to defeat efforts to legalize same-sex marriage in Illinois. [ Read more → ]

Some Maryland county clerks resist officiating same-sex marriages

Thursday, December 27, 2012
ST. MARY'S COUNTY, Md. -- The Chief Clerk of the Circuit Court for St. Mary’s County, Md., said Thursday that some deputy clerks were opposed to the state's new law legalizing same-sex marriage, based on their religious convictions and will no longer officiate at wedding ceremonies. [ Read more → ]
Frank Schubert

Defiant NOM strategist says marriage equality is not inevitable

Thursday, December 27, 2012
National Organization for Marriage (NOM) political director Frank Schubert — the mastermind strategist behind the NOM's failed campaign to defend "traditional" marriage in the recent election cycle — has slammed former GOP presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich for asserting that marriage equality was "inevitable." [ Read more → ]

BioTech company to offset tax burden for married, same-sex employees

Thursday, December 27, 2012
A Massachusetts-based biotechnology company announced it will join just a few dozen companies in the United States to supplement gay employees for taxes incurred when covering their spouse or partner in the company's health plan -- taxes that are not paid by their straight counterparts. [ Read more → ]
David Cameron

Cameron’s support for marriage equality improves popularity among LGBT voters

Wednesday, December 26, 2012
LONDON -- British Prime Minister David Cameron’s strong support for legalizing same-sex marriage has greatly improved his popularity with the U.K.'s LGBT voters since the last general election, according to a recent survey by [ Read more → ]

Uruguay Senate postpones vote on marriage equality bill until April

Wednesday, December 26, 2012
Amid heavy political controversy, Uruguay’s Senate on Wednesday unexpectedly postponed a vote on a marriage equality bill until its next session in April. [ Read more → ]

Maryland trolley business opts out of weddings to avoid same-sex couples

Wednesday, December 26, 2012
The owner of Annapolis' iconic old-fashioned trolleys that are often synonymous with the city's wedding scene, said he is abandoning the wedding industry, rather than be forced to serve same-sex couples when Marylard's marriage equality law takes effect next month. [ Read more → ]

Chicago Sun-Times: Marriage equality is ‘just the right thing to do’

Wednesday, December 26, 2012
As Illinois lawmakers prepare to consider legislation next month that would legalize same-sex marriage, the Chicago Sun-Times on Tuesday endorsed marriage equality. [ Read more → ]

Pope Benedict’s attack on marriage equality will backfire

Wednesday, December 26, 2012
In private moments, it must be disconcerting to the Pope that gay couples pledging their love and lives to each other, have significantly greater moral authority than the Vatican. People, including most moderate Catholics, must be scratching their heads and wondering why a troubled religious institution that does not have its house in order, is obsessively trying to cause disorder in loving gay households? [ Read more → ]

Brazil: Court ruling effectively legalizes same-sex marriage in Sao Paulo

Wednesday, December 26, 2012
A judge in the Brazilian state of São Paulo has ruled that gay and lesbian couples in civil unions will no longer have to apply to the courts to have their relationships "upgraded" to marriage, effectively legalizing same-sex marriage in the country's most populous state. [ Read more → ]

Christmas message from the Pope: Gay marriage ‘threatens’ humanity

Monday, December 24, 2012
The Vatican stepped up its assault on marriage equality, as Pope Benedict XVI said in his Christmas message that same-sex marriage is destroying the very foundations of the family and what it means to be human. [ Read more → ]
Richard Adams

Early marriage equality advocate Richard Adams dead at 65

Monday, December 24, 2012
Richard Adams, an early pioneer in the fight for marriage equality for gays and lesbians, died Dec. 17 in the Hollywood home he shared with Tony Sullivan, his partner of 43 years, his attorney said Sunday. Adams was 65. [ Read more → ]

Hundreds of religious leaders back Illinois marriage equality bill

Sunday, December 23, 2012
As lawmakers, coalitions and activists prepare for a potential vote early next month on legislation that would legalize same-sex marriage in Illinois, even more support for the bill has arrived from the local religious community. [ Read more → ]

Obama reflects on LGBT progress in ‘Time’ magazine interview

Friday, December 21, 2012
In an interview with Time magazine, which named him “Person of the Year,” President Obama said an “incredibly rapid transformation” has taken place during the course of his administration on LGBT issues — claiming his leadership played a role in moving them forward. [ Read more → ]
Newt GingrichFile photo by Michael Key, Washington Blade

Newt Gingrich: GOP must accept ‘reality’ of marriage equality

Thursday, December 20, 2012
In the wake of a string of victories for same-sex marriage, former Republican presidential contender Newt Gingrich has reportedly called on the Republican Party to accept the “reality” of marriage equality. [ Read more → ]

Rhode Island legislature likely to consider same-sex marriage bill in 2013

Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Rhode Island state Senate President Teresa Paiva Weed (D-Democrat) said Monday that, despite her opposition to same-sex marriage, she expects the issue will be considered by the Senate Judiciary Committee in the upcoming legislative session if the House advances a bill. [ Read more → ]

A Failure of Leadership: Ft. Bragg and the Pentagon

Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Military spouses’ organizations aren’t just social clubs – they provide critical support to families that face challenges that civilian families don’t understand - long separations due to training and deployment, stresses on everyone in the family when a loved one goes to war. Most Army wives, and husbands recognize that we need each others’ support to deal with the tough challenges of military life – and that we’re all in this together. So what the heck is wrong at Fort Bragg? [ Read more → ]

Anti-gay religious groups launch coalition opposing Illinois marriage equality

Wednesday, December 19, 2012
As lawmakers prepare to bring same-sex marriage legislation up for vote in the Illinois General Assembly early next month, a group of conservative religious organizations have formed a coalition against the bill. [ Read more → ]
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