New & Noteworthy:

South Carolina

South Carolina is the 8th U.S. state, admitted to the Union on May 23, 1788. Its capital and most populous city is Columbia.

Marriage Equality: A constitutional ban on same-sex marriage and recognition of same-sex relationships under any other name was approved by voters in November 2006. The constitutional ban is currently being challenged in federal court. The case is Bradacs v. Haley.

For information on state laws relating to LGBT rights, discrimination, hate crimes and adoption, click here.

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The week in review: The latest developments in marriage equality…

Saturday, October 18, 2014
Kevin Patterson, left, and David Larance, plaintiffs in one of two challenges to Arizona's same-sex marriage ban, kiss after exchanging vows, as Rev. John Dorhaer, who performed the ceremony, stands at right, Friday, Oct. 17, 2014, in Phoenix. Gay marriage has become legal in Arizona after the state's conservative attorney general said Friday that he wouldn't challenge a federal court decision that cleared the way for same-sex unions in the state.
Same-sex couples won the right to wed in Alaska and Arizona on Friday, after separate court decisions ended bans in those states. And a third ruling in Wyoming means marriages there could begin within a week. The rulings bookend two weeks of legal wrangling, triggered by a U.S. Supreme Court decision last week that effectively legalized same-sex marriage ...

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South Carolina AG says same-sex marriage decision may take months

Thursday, October 16, 2014
Attorney General Alan Wilson (R-S.C.)
BLUFFTON, S.C. -- South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson says any final decision on the legality of same-sex marriage in the state could be months away. Area media outlets report Wilson made the comment during a campaign stop at Sun City near Hilton Head Island on Wednesday when he was confronted by a same-sex couple who...

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Groups file federal lawsuit to force South Carolina to allow same-sex marriages

Wednesday, October 15, 2014
Colleen Condon, left, and her partner Nichols Bleckley appear at a news conference in Charleston, S.C., on Wednesday, Oct. 15, 2014, shortly after filing a federal lawsuit seeking the right to marry in South Carolina.
CHARLESTON, S.C. -- South Carolina Equality and Lambda Legal on Wednesday filed a federal lawsuit in U.S. District Court arguing that South Carolina is obligated to allow same-sex couples to marry, consistent with a ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.

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Federal judge may hold hearing over South Carolina same-sex marriage ban

Tuesday, October 14, 2014
COLUMBIA, S.C. -- Attorneys have until next week to file motions in a lawsuit playing a key role in South Carolina's debate over legalizing same-sex marriage. U.S. District Judge Michelle Childs on Tuesday gave attorneys until Oct. 23 to file, with another three weeks for responses.

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South Carolina Supreme Court says no marriage licenses for same-sex couples

Thursday, October 9, 2014
Trevor Donovan takes pictures at a Statehouse rally on Wednesday, Oct. 8, 2014, in Columbia, S.C. Supporters of gay marriage held a rally at the capitol the same day a Charleston County Probate judge approved an application for a same-sex marriage license.
COLUMBIA, S.C. -- A judge in Charleston appears to be waiting for instructions from the South Carolina Supreme Court before issuing the first same-sex marriage license in the state. Probate Court Judge Irving Condon had said he would issue licenses to about 15 families after the state's 24-hour waiting period for a marriage license expired.

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South Carolina AG asks state Supreme Court to halt same-sex marriage licenses

Wednesday, October 8, 2014
Attorney General Alan Wilson (R-S.C.)
CHARLESTON, S.C. -- South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson is asking the state Supreme Court to stop a Charleston County judge from issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Wilson's office filed its petition late Wednesday afternoon.

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South Carolina judge accepts marriage license application from same-sex couple

Wednesday, October 8, 2014
Nichols Beckley, left and, Colleen Condon after their application for a marriage license was accepted on Wednesday, Oct. 8, 2014 by a probate judge in Charleston. S.C. The couple will receive the license Thursday after a 24-hour waiting period unless the issuance is stayed by the South Carolina Supreme Court or another appropriate court.
CHARLESTON, S.C. -- A South Carolina court accepted a same-sex marriage application Wednesday and plans to issue a license despite the state's constitutional ban against the practice and the attorney general's pledge to defend it.

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Federal judge wants briefs in South Carolina same-sex marriage challenge

Tuesday, October 7, 2014
COLUMBIA, S.C. -- A federal judge is asking lawyers for a couple that want South Carolina to recognize their same-sex marriage and attorneys for the state to submit briefs next week after a federal appeals court ruling appeared to clear the way for gay marriage in the state.

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South Carolina AG says he will keep fighting to uphold gay marriage ban

Monday, October 6, 2014
Attorney General Alan Wilson (R-S.C.)
COLUMBIA, S.C. -- South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson says he will keep fighting to uphold the state's constitutional ban on same-sex marriage. Wilson issued a statement Monday hours after the U.S. Supreme Court decided not to hear an appeal of a ruling allowing same-sex marriage by a federal appeals court with jurisdiction over South Carolina.

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Columbia, S.C., mayor becomes 500th to join marriage equality coalition

Wednesday, September 24, 2014
Steve Benjamin
COLUMBIA, S.C. -- Mayor Steve Benjamin of Columbia, S.C., has signed on to Mayors for the Freedom to Marry, becoming the 500th U.S. mayor to join the nationwide effort of municipal leaders advocating for marriage equality.

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