New & Noteworthy:

Marriage Equality

As of February 9, 2015:

In the United States, same-sex marriage is legal in 37 states (Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, Minnesota, Montana, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming), in the District of Columbia, and in the cities of St. Louis and Kansas City, Mo. Legal challenges are pending in the remaining states.

Since 2000, 16 countries (Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Denmark, France, Iceland, Luxembourg, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, and Uruguay) have legalized same-sex marriage, as have parts of Mexico and the Untied Kingdom. (In the United Kingdom, same-sex marriage is legal in England, Scotland, and Wales.) A marriage equality law will come into effect in Finland in 2016. On May 22, 2015, Ireland became the first country in the world to legalize same-sex marriage by a popular vote of its citizens.

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NOM asks full Ninth Circuit to allow it to appeal Ore. same-sex marriage ruling

Thursday, September 11, 2014
NOM chairman John Eastman
The National Organization for Marriage has asked the full Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to allow it to appeal a federal court ruling that struck down Oregon's ban on same-sex marriage. The request comes two weeks after a three-judge panel on the Ninth Circuit Court rejected NOM's attempt to [...]

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U.S. Supreme Court adds same-sex marriage cases to Sept. 29 agenda

Wednesday, September 10, 2014
U.S. Supreme Court
WASHINGTON -- The Supreme Court has formally added gay marriage cases to the justices' agenda for their closed-door conference on Sept. 29. The action Wednesday does not mean that the court will decide that day to hear state appeals of lower court rulings that struck down bans on same-sex marriage. [...]

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80 Utah lawmakers warn Supreme Court that gay marriage could lead to polygamy, incest

Wednesday, September 10, 2014
Utah state capitol in Salt Lake City.
SALT LAKE CITY -- Eighty members of the Utah state legislature have filed a brief asking the U.S. Supreme Court to reverse a federal appeals court ruling striking down Utah's same-sex marriage ban, because allowing gay to marry could lead to incestuous and polygamous marriages. The amicus brief supporting Utah's [...]

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Will the U.S. Supreme Court finally settle the issue of marriage equality?

Wednesday, September 10, 2014
U.S. Supreme Court Justices: Back row (left to right): Sonia Sotomayor, Stephen G. Breyer, Samuel A. Alito, and Elena Kagan. Front row (left to right): Clarence Thomas, Antonin Scalia, Chief Justice John Roberts, Anthony Kennedy, and Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
WASHINGTON -- Both sides in the same-sex marriage debate agree on one thing: It's time for the Supreme Court to settle the matter. Even a justice recently said she thinks so, too. The emerging consensus makes it likely that the justices soon will agree to take up the question of [...]

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GOP U.S. Senate candidate trumpets endorsement from gay marriage plaintiffs

Tuesday, September 9, 2014
Ben West and Paul Rummell
SALEM, Ore. -- Two of the plaintiffs who filed a lawsuit that led to Oregon allowing same-sex marriage are throwing their support behind Republican Senate candidate Monica Wehby. Wehby's campaign trumpeted the endorsement from Ben West and Paul Rummell on Tuesday. Her campaign released a television ad featuring West, who [...]

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Fla. judge vacates same-sex marriage ruling on legal technicality

Tuesday, September 9, 2014
Broward-County-FL
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — A Broward County judge, who last month struck down Florida’s ban on same-sex marriage, vacated his own ruling Thursday on a legal technicality. The Miami Herald reports that Circuit Court Judge Dale Cohen vacated his decision because a petitioner in the case “failed to comply with [...]

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Plaintiffs refute Texas AG’s claim that same-sex marriage is bad for kids

Tuesday, September 9, 2014
Attorney General Greg Abbott (R-Texas)
AUSTIN, Texas — Lawyers for two same-sex couples challenging Texas’ same-sex marriage ban are refuting state claims the prohibition promotes raising children in “stable, lasting relationships,” arguing in an appeals brief Tuesday that it serves no legitimate state interest. The 88-page filing with the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals [...]

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Indiana, Wisconsin appeal same-sex marriage rulings to U.S. Supreme Court

Tuesday, September 9, 2014
U.S. Supreme Court
Attorneys general for Wisconsin and Indiana each tried to convince the U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday that his state's gay marriage case should be the one to decide the contentious issue for the country. Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller and his Wisconsin counterpart, J.B. Van Hollen, separately asked the nation's [...]

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Judge to decide next step in N.D. same-sex marriage suit

Tuesday, September 9, 2014
North-Dakota
FARGO, N.D. -- A federal judge is set to decide the future of a lawsuit filed by seven couples challenging the constitutional prohibition on same-sex marriage in North Dakota. The suit opposes both North Dakota's ban on gay marriage and its refusal to recognize marriages of same-sex couples who legally [...]

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Federal appeals court hears arguments over impact of same-sex marriage

Monday, September 8, 2014
Attorney Deborah Ferguson, left, presents arguments against the gay marriage ban in Idaho at the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco, Monday, Sept. 8, 2014.
SAN FRANCISCO -- A debate over whether children would be harmed or helped by legalizing same-sex marriage was the main focus when a federal appeals court in San Francisco waded again into the issue of the constitutionality of gay marriage. The three judges on the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals [...]

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