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Archives – October, 2014

Equality news round-up: Kansas marriage hearing today, and more

There’s a hearing in the federal challenge to Kansas’ same-sex marriage ban.

Continue 183 Comments October 31, 2014

Equality news round-up: Even more state briefs defending Alabama’s same-sex marriage ban, and more

News from Alabama, Montana, Nevada, and more.

Continue 101 Comments October 30, 2014

Equality news round-up: Puerto Rico marriage case heads to the First Circuit, and more

News from the First Circuit, Texas, and more.

Continue 103 Comments October 29, 2014

Equality news round-up: NOM getting involved in Senate races, and more

NOM is getting involved in some Senate races, plus news from South Carolina, Missouri, and more.

Continue 63 Comments October 28, 2014

A Few Anti-Gay Governors Just Won’t Admit Defeat

By Matt Baume

The number of states with marriage has gone up yet again this week. Only a handful of states are stil trying to defend their marriage bans, and they’re quickly running out of ways to delay their inevitable loss. A straight couple in Kansas has filed a new anti-gay lawsuit, and it’s nuts. A federal judge just ruled against the freedom to marry, but his decision has virtually no chance of being upheld. Plus, there’s a powerful new lawsuit in Mississippi.

We picked up one more marriage equality state last week: Wyoming, bringing the total to 32. Wyoming is part of the tenth circuit, where rulings in Utah and Oklahoma paved the way for marriage equality earlier this year. Wyoming Governor Matt Mead announced last week that he would end the state’s attempts to defend its marriage ban. That’s quite a turnaround from three years ago, when Mead campaigned on opposing marriage for gay and lesbian couples.

At this point, it’s clear that the freedom to marry is coming to every state, and soon. So who’s still fighting it? Well, last week Idaho Governor Butch Otter asked the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals for another chance to defend his state’s marriage ban. You may recall the bumbling defense that Otter’s attorney, Monte Stewart, offered before the Ninth Circuit just a few weeks ago. The court is unlikely to grant Idaho’s request for an en banc hearing, and even if they did, the state has almost no chance of prevailing.

Kansas, Montana, and South Carolina are also still fighting to uphold their marriage bans. As in Idaho, their chances of success are vanishingly slim. The most unlikely arguments happening right now are in Kansas, where a straight couple wants to intervene in a marriage case because they say gay couples literally want to steal their marriage. They also claim that if gay couples can get married, then the word marriage itself might cease to exist. The court is likely to give these arguments exactly as much consideration as they deserve.

Last week Ruth Bader Ginsburg observed that so far, federal appeals courts have all been in agreement that marriage bans are unconstitutional. But there’s still a chance that could change. We’re currently awaiting decisions in the Fifth and Sixth Circuits, and just last week, a judge in Puerto Rico upheld a marriage ban. Puerto Rico is part of the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit, along with several New England states. That ruling now moves to appeal. Considering that every other state in the First Circuit has had marriage equality for years, it’s very unlikely that First Circuit judges will uphold Puerto Rico’s ruling.

And there’s a new federal case in Mississippi. Two couples there have sued the state for marriage recognition. Previously, the only other lawsuit in Mississippi was a divorce case. This new lawsuit is much stronger. It joins two other Fifth Circuit cases in Texas and Louisiana, both of which are a little bit further along, but Mississippi could quickly catch up to them.

59 Comments October 28, 2014

Equality news round-up: US to recognize same-sex marriage in more states, and more

News from Kansas, Indiana, Idaho, and more.

Continue 97 Comments October 27, 2014

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