New & Noteworthy:


Hawaii is the 50th U.S. state, admitted to the Union on August 21, 1959. The state capital is Honolulu, and Hawaii is the only U.S. state made up entirely of islands. It is the northernmost island group in Polynesia, occupying most of an archipelago in the central Pacific Ocean.

LGBT Rights in Hawaii: Same-sex marriage is legal in Hawaii as of Dec. 2, 2013, following passage of a bill in the state legislature, and signed by Gov. Neil Abercrombie on Nov. 13, 2013. State law prohibits discrimination based on both sexual orientation and gender identity or expression in employment, public accommodations and housing. Hawaii has a law that addresses hate crime protection for both actual and/or perceived sexual orientation and gender identity or expression. Hawaii allows individuals to adopt and has no explicit prohibition on adoption by same-sex couples or on second-parent adoption by a person of the same sex as the first parent.

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Hawaii legislative panel backs bill to ease gender switch on birth certificates

Wednesday, February 18, 2015
Mika Inoue, of Kahala, poses outside a hearing room at the Hawaii Legislature on Wednesday, Feb. 18, 2015, in Honolulu. Inoue supports a bill that would lift a surgical requirement for those who want to switch the gender designation on their birth certificates.
Mika Inoue was in college when she faced some of the scariest threats against her life as a transgender woman. Now, at age 25, she hopes to avoid those situations by getting a new birth certificate that confirms with her gender identity, without undergoing surgery. [...]

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Marriage News Watch: Dec. 22, 2014

Monday, December 22, 2014
Marriage equality supports gather outside a Florida courthouse on July 2, 2014.
Florida clerks can start issuing marriage licenses to gay couples in January -- but if they do, they could risk arrest and jail time. [...]

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Hawaii Supreme Court hears arguments in challenge to marriage equality law

Thursday, December 18, 2014
A lawsuit brought by GOP state Rep. Bob McDermott claims the Legislature didn't have authority to pass the law. [...]

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Same-sex marriage tops Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie’s legacy

Saturday, November 29, 2014
Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie, center, poses with legislators and supporters after signing a bill on Nov.  13, 2013, legalizing same-sex marriage in Hawaii.
HONOLULU -- It was a decision that Gov. Neil Abercrombie said may have cost him re-election, but one that he stood by as a proud legacy that will live on long after he leaves the state's highest office. Under Abercrombie's tenure as governor, Hawaii legalized same-sex marriage, and Abercrombie's decision [...]

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Hawaii governor to win award for efforts to legalize same-sex marriage

Monday, November 10, 2014
Gov. Neil Abercrombie (D-Hawaii)
HONOLULU -- Outgoing Gov. Neil Abercrombie will be given an award for his work to legalize same-sex marriage in Hawaii. The Equality Hawaii Foundation will present Abercrombie with the Steven H. Levinson Trailblazer Award at its annual gala on Nov. 22. [...]

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Ninth Circuit declares Hawaii same-sex marriage lawsuit moot

Tuesday, October 21, 2014
HONOLULU -- A 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruling has quietly ended a last-ditch court fight against a Hawaii law allowing same-sex marriage. The court issued an opinion earlier this month declaring moot a lawsuit filed by a Hawaii couple seeking to marry before the state legalized gay marriage [...]

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Marriage News Watch: Supreme Court to consider cases, Ninth Circuit recap

Monday, September 15, 2014
Gay rights advocates Stuart Gaffney, at left, and John Lewis, with the group Marriage Equality USA, wait to enter a hearing on the issue of gay marriage outside of the U.S. Ninth District Court of Appeals on Monday, Sept. 8, 2014, in San Francisco. For the first time since it declared California's gay marriage ban unconstitutional, the federal appeals court in San Francisco is readying to hear arguments over same-sex weddings in a political and legal climate that's vastly different than when it overturned Proposition 8 in 2012. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
The number of marriage cases before the Supreme Court keeps climbing, with the Court scheduled to decide which ones to take in just a few weeks. Plus, couples file new briefs in Texas, and appeal last week's anti-gay ruling from a federal judge in Louisiana. These stories and more in [...]

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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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Marriage News Watch: Massive victory in 7th Circuit, problems with ruling in La.

Monday, September 8, 2014
Cody Huston, left, and Tina Cady, both of Madison, embrace after getting married Saturday, June 7, 2014, in Madison, Wis. On Friday a federal judge struck down the state's gay marriage ban.
A massive victory for equality in Wisconsin and Indiana, with one of the most strongly-worded decisions yet. A judge in Louisiana has ruled against marriage equality, but there are some problems with his ruling. There are major oral arguments this week in multiple states, and more cases move closer to [...]

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Two years after overturning Prop 8, gay marriage back before the Ninth Circuit

Monday, September 8, 2014
Marriage equality advocates rally outside the James R. Browning U.S. Courthouse in San Francisco, home of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, on February 7, 2012, moment before hearing that the court upheld a District Court ruling that Proposition 8, California’s ban on same-sex marriage, was unconstitutional.
SAN FRANCISCO -- For the first time since it declared California's gay marriage ban unconstitutional, the federal appeals court in San Francisco is readying to hear arguments over same-sex weddings in a political and legal climate that's vastly different than when it overturned Proposition 8 in 2012. State and federal [...]

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