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Marriage Bans Even Worse than we Thought

DOMA Repeal Marriage equality Prop 8 trial Televising Videos

By Matt Baume

Holy cow. Where to begin? Dustin Lance Black’s play about Prop 8 hit Broadway for an incredible night. The tapes of the Prop 8 trial might actually get released. Florida’s working on domestic partnerships, North Carolina’s marriage ban is even worse than we thought, New Hampshire might repeal marriage, and Missouri — yes, Missouri — favors legal recognition for gay couples. All that, plus the first Republican co-sponsor for the repeal of DOMA. Wow.

I’m sure you noticed that I didn’t do an episode last week. That’s because I was in New York for the star-studded Broadway premier of Dustin Lance Black’s new play, “8,” based on the transcripts of the Prop 8 trial. It was even more amazing than anyone could have hoped, and if you missed it, don’t worry: it’s coming to your town. Now that it’s had its premiere, the plan is to license the play to local community theater and student groups all over the world. Visit for more information.

Meanwhile on the very same day as the show, the Federal Circuit Court in California ruled that the tapes of the Prop 8 trial should be unsealed. This is huge, but it’s not a done deal yet. The tapes are still locked up for another week, during which time the Prop 8 proponents will appeal the order. Then we’re probably looking at several weeks for the appeal to play out.

Let’s turn now to Florida, where Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen became the first congressional Republican to co-sponsor the Respect for Marriage Act, which would repeal the federal marriage ban. That brings the total number of co-sponsors to nearly 130, a record high.

Also in Florida, two Democrats have introduced a domestic partnership bill. But the state already has a constitutional amendment banning recognition similar to marriage, so it’s unclear if Florida would even be allowed to recognize domestic partnerships.

The language of North Carolina’s proposed constitutional amendment to ban marriage is even more harsh than was previously agreed to. Lawmakers debated a version of the bill that permitted employers to opt in to providing partnership benefits, but the version that will go before voters leaves that provision out. Polling currently shows the bill losing by a very slim margin, which could be a problem since the vote will occur in May, during the Republican primary when conservative turnout will be high.

And In New Hampshire, Republicans have introduced a bill to end marriage equality in that state. The proposed measure would ban more than just marriage — it would leave couples with even fewer protections than they had under civil unions. The House Judiciary Committee will vote on the bill next month.

Those are the headlines, visit us over at for more on all these stories and more. And connect with us at to get breaking alerts right on your wall. See you next week.


  • 1. B&E  |  September 26, 2011 at 12:27 pm

    I found this promising.

  • 2. AnonyGrl  |  September 26, 2011 at 12:36 pm

    I will preface this by saying it is, at the moment, hearsay… but I understand that Bank of America, which currently has a good policy of inclusion and diversity and partner benefits, has said that if the NC anti-equality bill passes, they will move their business out of NC, and close their branches in that state.

    Again, that was hearsay, and the other news was that other companies may be considering the same move. So anti-equality could end up costing the state many thousands of jobs and millions in revenues. Which to my mind is even STRONGER as an argument than the financial argument used in NY to point out how many millions the state would gain if equality passed.

    H/T to Richard Jernigan for pointing this out to me.

  • 3. Paul  |  September 26, 2011 at 12:55 pm

    Actually, it's not hearsay there is an actual quote from Martin Eakes who is a member of their board who said "If you want to figure out a way to push Bank of America from its headquarters in Charlotte to New York, pass this amendment"

  • 4. AnonyGrl  |  September 26, 2011 at 1:46 pm

    Excellent! Thanks for the confirmation… it was hearsay to ME, since I had only HEARD it was SAID… 🙂

    So that is a BIG point that needs to be made when discussing this amendment. Loss of millions in revenues!!!

  • 5. Straight Dave  |  September 26, 2011 at 2:22 pm

    Here's a good article that summarizes the overall NC business attitude toward the situation. This seems like a struggle for the future of NC. Are they looking forward or backward?

  • 6. Paul  |  September 26, 2011 at 3:42 pm

    Having lived in North Carolina I can say they are looking backward. Always looking backward.

  • 7. Ronnie  |  September 26, 2011 at 2:00 pm

    Subscribing & sharing…..

    Playboy Club actor Sean Maher Says He's Gay And The Closet Made Him Miserable

    “Creatively, I feel so much more open and free, and I am so happy on The Playboy Club,” Maher says. “I think it’s because I’ve never been so open on set. All of the relationships that I have off-camera, I never would have allowed five years ago. It feels so liberating.”


  • 8. Mackenzie  |  September 26, 2011 at 2:43 pm

    I see in the headline it is talking about MO. As a missourian I am highly interested in what they are talking about….anyone have any info?

  • 9. MO-er  |  September 26, 2011 at 3:57 pm

    I also noticed that info about MO was not actually in the video…

  • 10. Phillip R  |  September 27, 2011 at 2:49 pm

    Same here. I'm a MO'er myself and was quite interested in this. Haven't heard anything at all locally.

  • 11. Kathleen  |  September 26, 2011 at 3:07 pm

    UPDATE: Perry

    9th Circuit issues temporary stay of order to release trial recordings.

    If I'm reading the rules correctly, responses to the emergency motion are due next Monday, then Proponents have 7 days to reply, bringing us to Oct 10. So unless someone convinces the Court to expedite this schedule, this is at least another two week delay before this issue is resolved.

  • 12. Alan_Eckert  |  September 26, 2011 at 3:30 pm

    A 16-year old boy just came out to his parent and posted about it on a blog he recently started. I came upon his blog via Outsports. His coming out story will be posted in 3 parts, but the first part includes a letter he wrote to his parents. Head over and send him some love =)

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