New & Noteworthy:


Mississippi is the 20th U.S. state, admitted to the Union on Dec. 10, 1817. Its capital and most populous city is Jackson.

LGBT Rights in Mississippi: A constitutional ban on same-sex marriage was approved by voters in November 2004. Mississippi law does not address discrimination based on gender identity or sexual orientation. State law does not address hate crimes based on gender identity or sexual orientation. Mississippi permits adoption by an unmarried adult without regard to sexual orientation, but couples of the same gender may not adopt jointly.

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Same-sex couple’s divorce case before Mississippi Supreme Court

Sunday, November 16, 2014
JACKSON, Miss. -- The attorney for a woman who wants the state of Mississippi to recognize her same-sex marriage in order to grant a divorce says his client's case is on a parallel track to the efforts in federal court to overturn the state's ban on gay marriage.

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Judge hears arguments in challenge to Mississippi gay marriage ban

Wednesday, November 12, 2014
JACKSON, Miss. -- A federal judge heard five hours of arguments Wednesday about whether to overturn Mississippi's ban on same-sex marriage, and he pressed attorneys to say whether the state's interests outweigh those of gay or lesbian couples who want the same legal rights as straight couples.

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Mississippi officials seek to uphold ban on same-sex marriage

Monday, November 10, 2014
Mississippi state capitol in Jackson.
JACKSON, Miss. -- Mississippi's Republican governor and Democratic attorney general are asking a federal judge to uphold the state's ban on same-sex marriage. The state made the request in court papers Monday, responding to a lawsuit filed Oct. 20 in U.S. District Court in Jackson by two lesbian couples and a gay-rights group, Campaign for Southern Equality.

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HRC launches first ever LGBT public education campaign in Mississippi

Saturday, November 8, 2014
Mary Jane Kennedy, mother to two gay sons speaks about her faith, her belief that God loves gays like everyone else and the need for people of faith especially in the Deep South, to envelop gays, lesbians, and transgender people, at her Brandon, Miss., home Wednesday, Nov. 5, 2014.
BRANDON, Miss. -- Mary Jane Kennedy considers herself a conservative Christian Republican, and she's led Bible studies in her native Mississippi for decades. She's also the mother of two gay sons and one of the faces in a new advertising campaign aimed at softening religious opposition in the Deep South to equal rights for people who are...

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Hearing set for next week in challenge to Mississippi same-sex marriage ban

Friday, November 7, 2014
JACKSON, Miss. -- A federal judge will hear arguments next week in a lawsuit that challenges Mississippi's ban on same-sex marriage. A hearing before U.S. District Judge Carlton Reeves is set for 9 a.m. Wednesday in Jackson.

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DOMA attorney to lead federal challenge to Mississippi same-sex marriage ban

Monday, October 20, 2014
JACKSON, Miss. -- A federal lawsuit has been filed challenging Mississippi's ban on same-sex marriage. The challenge was filed Monday in U.S. District Court in Jackson on behalf of two same-sex couples and the Campaign for Southern Equality (CSE).

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ACLU seeks to file brief in Mississippi same-sex couple’s divorce case

Thursday, September 25, 2014
JACKSON, Miss. -- The American Civil Liberties Union wants to file a brief in support of a woman who wants the state of Mississippi to recognize her same-sex marriage in order to grant a divorce. The Mississippi Supreme Court has not ruled on the motion filed Thursday. It's unclear if the court will hear oral arguments or when it might rule....

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Miss. governor intervenes in same-sex couple’s divorce case

Wednesday, September 17, 2014
Gov. Phil Bryant (R-Miss.)
JACKSON, Miss. -- Gov. Phil Bryant is intervening in a case involving a Mississippi woman who wants the state to recognize her same-sex marriage in order to grant a divorce. Bryant, represented by Christian legal group Alliance Defending Freedom, is opposing the woman's appeal to the Mississippi Supreme Court.

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Starkville, Miss., rescinds plan to allow benefits coverage for unmarried partners

Wednesday, September 17, 2014
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Officials in Starkville, Miss., are now saying they won't let city employees buy health insurance coverage for unmarried domestic partners, including those of the same sex. Aldermen voted 4-2 Tuesday to delete part an insurance plan they approved two weeks ago...

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Study: 24,000 transgender voters could be disenfranchised in November

Wednesday, September 10, 2014
LOS ANGELES – Ten states’ strict voter ID laws may create substantial barriers to voting and possible disenfranchisement for more than 24,000 transgender voters this November. According to a new study entitled, “The Potential Impact of Voter Identification Laws on Transgender Voters in the 2014 General Election,” authored by the Williams Institute’s ...

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