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News round up and open thread

LGBT Legal Cases Marriage equality Marriage Equality Trials

Capitol Hill
Capitol Hill
– A House committee has voted down a bill that would have helped gay veterans.

– The Sixth Circuit has denied Kim Davis’ request for a stay of the ‘clarified’ injunction, because she didn’t file the request in the district court first. She can still go back to the district court to file the request.

Thanks to Equality Case Files for these filings


  • 1. Tony MinasTirith  |  September 18, 2015 at 9:34 am

    ABC News' Gio Benitez engaged to boyfriend

    Talk about a perfect proposal location.

    ABC News correspondent Gio Benitez, who joined the news organization in 2013, is engaged to his boyfriend Tommy DiDario. Benitez announced the engagement on his Instagram with a very romantic photo documenting the proposal, which occurred just in front of the Eiffel Tower in Paris.

    …well, there goes my reason for living 🙁

    I am so happy for them though. I wonder if David Muir is going to congratulate them on World News Tonight. The team at GMA did wish their colleague Gio, congratulations on his engagement to his Fiance, Tommy Didario. It's awesome, when they get married…they'll be legally married in ALL 50 STATES across the US.

  • 2. Montezuma58_1  |  September 18, 2015 at 1:13 pm

    Tha Alabama Supreme Court is up to its old tricks. They say the state doesn't have to recognize an out of state adoption. The crux of their position is that the Georgia courts did not follow Georgia laws. I'm not sure if any of those yahoos have passed the Georgia bar exam.

  • 3. ebohlman  |  September 18, 2015 at 4:37 pm

    Since adoptions are judicial acts, the Full Faith and Credit clause applies here and the ASC is full of, er, themselves.

  • 4. VIRick  |  September 18, 2015 at 4:58 pm

    Alabama Supreme Court Says Alabama Need Not Recognize Georgia Adoption

    On Friday, 18 September 2015, the Alabama Supreme Court refused to recognize an adoption by a lesbian mother of her three children granted by a Georgia court in 2007. The children now live in Jefferson County AL.

    A lesbian rights group, which represented the mother who adopted the children, decried the ruling. "The Alabama Supreme Court's refusal to recognize an adoption granted eight years ago harms not only these children, but all children with adoptive parents," said Cathy Sakimura, Family Law Director for the NCLR. "Children who are adopted must be able to count on their adoptions being final. Allowing an adoption to be found invalid years later because there may have been a legal error in the adoption puts all adopted children at risk of losing their forever families."

    The case before the Alabama Supreme Court involves two women, identified only as "E.L. v. V.L." in court documents. The women had been in a long-term relationship and had three children through artificial insemination. The non-biological mother, V.L., adopted the children in Georgia. The biological mother participated in that process and consented to the adoptions. When the parents later broke up, the biological mother, E.L., kept V.L. from seeing the children, according to V.L.'s attorneys. V.L. sought visitation in Alabama, where the family now lives. E.L. opposed her request, arguing that the Georgia adoption was invalid in Alabama.

    The case was first appealed to the Alabama Court of Civil Appeals. That court ruled in October 2014 that the Jefferson County judge had erred when he granted V.L. visitation rights. But then that appeals court reversed itself in February 2015. The case was then appealed to the Alabama Supreme Court. The Alabama Supreme Court found in today's ruling that Alabama did not have to recognize adoption by the woman, V.L., of her partner's biological children because it found the Georgia court didn't properly apply Georgia law.

    "Although the Alabama Supreme Court recognized that full faith and credit prohibits a state from inquiring into the laws applied by a court from another state, it ruled that Alabama did not have to respect the Georgia court's adoption because the Court believed that Georgia law did not allow same-sex parents to adopt," the NCLR wrote in today's statement.

    Justice Greg Shaw was the lone dissenter in today's opinion. He argued that Alabama is prohibited from deciding whether the Georgia court correctly applied its own laws. Shaw also stated that the ruling could set a "dangerous precedent" that could call into question the finality of adoptions in Alabama because of any irregularity in a probate court's decision.

  • 5. Tony MinasTirith  |  September 18, 2015 at 1:42 pm

    Deputy Clerk Brian Mason's Attorney: Kentucky Clerk Interfered With Judge's Order

    AP – OWENSBORO, Ky. — The attorney for one of the deputy clerks in Kim Davis' office says Davis disobeyed a federal judge's order when she altered marriage license forms for same-sex couples.

    Now the deputy clerk issuing licences has his own attorney…and crowd funding?

  • 6. GregInTN  |  September 18, 2015 at 2:29 pm

    I believe Judge Bunning assigned lawyers to each of the deputies on the day he found Kim Davis in contempt.

  • 7. Sagesse  |  September 18, 2015 at 3:38 pm

    And their counsel are to report to Judge Bunning every two weeks on whether Davis (her office) is complying/interfering with the issuance of licences in Rowan county. This may be the first of those reports.

  • 8. VIRick  |  September 18, 2015 at 4:34 pm

    "…. Judge Bunning assigned lawyers to each of the deputies on the day he found Kim Davis in contempt."

    Yes, correct. He did.

    Per Equality Case Files:

    More Court Filings in the Rowan County KY Saga

    Today, 18 September 2015, in "Miller v. Davis," the Rowan County KY Clerk who won't issue marriage licenses, the attorney for Deputy Clerk Brian Mason, the only clerk currently issuing any licenses, has filed a notice with the District Court discussing his client's concern about issuing licenses that have been modified and may not be valid. The notice is here:
    <a href="http://.” target=”_blank”>.

    Also filed today, 18 September 2015:
    – Davis's request for a stay of the expanded injunction: (This is the same request which was denied yesterday, 17 September 2015, by the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals because it was filed directly with them, rather than with the district court)
    – Plaintiffs' motion to resume briefing on the motion for class certification:

  • 9. Rick55845  |  September 19, 2015 at 5:13 pm

    Did she alter licenses issued to opposite sex couples too, or only those issued to same-sex couples?

  • 10. davepCA  |  September 19, 2015 at 6:26 pm

    Very good question!

  • 11. JayJonson  |  September 18, 2015 at 2:14 pm

    President Obama has nominated Eric Fanning as Secretary of the Army. If approved by the Senate, Fanning will become the first openly gay Secretary. He is currently acting Undersecretary of the Army.

    He has previously served as Air Force under secretary, deputy under secretary of the Navy, and deputy chief management officer of the Navy. Fanning has also served as Secretary of Defense Ash Carter’s chief of staff.

  • 12. A_Jayne  |  September 18, 2015 at 11:35 pm

    Didn't click the link, so no idea (other than what is here) of this man's age, therefore how long it might (or might not) be until he retires, but with his background, sounds as if he will qualify for higher posts in the future.

  • 13. Sagesse  |  September 19, 2015 at 5:29 am


  • 14. A_Jayne  |  September 19, 2015 at 7:16 am

    As long as he chooses to remain in some kind of service, then, plenty of time left for multiple promotions

  • 15. Mike_Baltimore  |  September 19, 2015 at 5:52 pm

    According to all that I have read, the Secretary of the Army AND Under Secretary of the Army are civilians, which means Fanning has already resigned all military positions he may have had.

    If you can show different, it would be appreciated.

    (Resignation in the military at a relative early age is possible. One of my cousin's resigned his position [I believe as a Captain] in the US Navy while he was in his early 30s after graduating in the Top Ten from Annapolis. He would have resigned earlier, but his F-I-L [a rear admiral] made arrangements for him to be on a 6-month deployment when his [original] enlistment was up half-way through the deployment [thus he would have become a civilian], a deployment where civilians were strictly prohibited. Refusal to being deployed would have ended with my cousin in the brig for years beyond deployment.)

    In any event, it looks like Fanning will have an opportunity to at least two more decades of posts (as a civilian) in the future.

  • 16. A_Jayne  |  September 19, 2015 at 7:13 pm

    I admit to being ignorant of which Pentagon (and/or advisor) positions are military and which are civilian. Regardless, Fanning has accumulated experience serving in the Departments of the Air Force, Navy, Defense, and will now in the Department of the Army. Whether any of that is as a member of the military or the civilian force, it is experience which, IMHO, would prepare him to also serve in other, higher-level positions.

    Apparently I did not state that clearly enough in my original post.

  • 17. Sagesse  |  September 18, 2015 at 4:33 pm

    Tangentially off-topic, but this REALLY bothers me. My opinion may be coloured by the fact that I am Canadian, and Canada is another country that has birthright citizenship.

    Immigrants Fight Texas’ Birth Certificate Rules [New York Times]

    I always find it hugely offensive when US law (well, any law, really, but the US has a bad habit) has the effect of punishing children for who their parents are – illegitimacy is an old example, SSM bans until recently, and now immigration discrimination. If you don't like birthright citizenship, change the constitution. But don't mistreat children who are absolutely US citizens in an attempt to get back at their undocumented parents.

    End rant.

  • 18. Deeelaaach  |  September 20, 2015 at 6:23 am

    You're not alone. A lot of us in the U.S. are just as upset and offended as you are.

  • 19. ianbirmingham  |  September 18, 2015 at 4:48 pm

    The reaction to gay marriage being legal in Florida is mostly 'no big deal.' 76% of voters in the state either say that it's had no impact on their lives or a positive one, with just 24% claiming it's been a negative. Even among Republican voters 71% say it hasn't been a big deal.

  • 20. Mike_Baltimore  |  September 18, 2015 at 5:15 pm

    I'd LOVE to hear the negative impacts. I'd bet (and I don't bet) that at least 1/2 would claim that ME is against their 'sincerely held religious beliefs'.

  • 21. waxr  |  September 19, 2015 at 8:26 am

    Numerous slave owners had a sincerely held religious belief that slavery was part of God's plan.

    Lev 25:44-46
    Eph 6:5
    Col 3:22
    Titus 2:9
    1 Peter 2:18

  • 22. VIRick  |  September 18, 2015 at 5:32 pm

    "…. with just 24% claiming it's been a negative."

    …. meaning that only 24% of Florida residents are talking out their ass, including the half that Mike identified as claiming to have "sincerely-held religious beliefs."

  • 23. tx64jm  |  September 19, 2015 at 10:45 am

    Well … if we look at what the survey actually says (instead of the press release summary):

    Q1 Has the legalization of gay marriage in Florida
    had a positive or negative impact on your life,
    or has it not had any impact at all?

    Positive impact 13%
    Negative impact 24%
    No impact at all 63%

    So of those people who have actually been impacted by gay marriage, the negative impact outweighs the positive impact by a 2-to-1 margin.

    Q16 If you are Hispanic, press 1. If white, press 2. If
    African American, press 3. If other, press 4.
    Hispanic 14%
    White 65%
    African American 14%
    Other 7%

    Whats really interesting is the breakdown by race:

    Among Hispanics, the negative to positive ratio is 33-14
    Among Whites, the negative to positive ratio is 23-12
    Among Blacks, the negative to positive ratio is 25-7
    Among Others, the negative to positive ratio is 18 -30

    And the breakdown by age:

    Q17 If you are 18 to 29 years old, press 1. If 30 to
    45, press 2. If 46 to 65, press 3. If you are older
    than 65, press 4.
    18 to 29 12%
    30 to 45 19%
    46 to 65 40%
    Older than 65 29%

    18-29, the negative to positive ratio is 37-18
    30-45 the negative to positive ratio is 24-14
    46-65, the negative to positive ratio is 20-14
    65/older, the negative positive ratio is 25-8

  • 24. TheVirginian722  |  September 19, 2015 at 11:41 am

    You obviously don't understand why PPP words this question the way it does.

    It is plausible to believe that 13% of the respondents reasonably conclude that marriage equality has had a "positive impact on your life," by providing equal rights to themselves, to others who are close to them, or even just living in a society that treats all its citizens equally and fairly.

    However, for anyone to conclude that marriage equality has had a "negative impact on your life" is patently ridiculous. The only basis for someone giving such an answer would just be plain and simple anti-gay bigotry. The marriages of couples who are almost certainly total strangers to you obviously cannot have a "negative impact on your life" other than to just annoy you or bum you out because you resent their happiness being treated as equal citizens.

    PPP has wisely worded their question in this way to smoke out the hardcore anti-gay bigots in each state where it is asked. They know perfectly well that these respondents have not had any "negative impact" on their lives. Kudos to PPP for taking this Bigot Census. It gives us a good idea of what we still have to deal with.

  • 25. tx64jm  |  September 19, 2015 at 2:58 pm

    Sure I do … PPP is a known, left-leaning, democratic polling organization. The bias is obvious in the question.

  • 26. davepCA  |  September 19, 2015 at 4:52 pm

    The only "negative impact" experienced by those who made that selection was that these people are simply feeling frustrated because people they don't like are no longer being harmed by unconstitutional laws. That's hardly a legitimate "negative impact". The people who made that selection would be no more able to provide any evidence of demonstrable particularized harm from the overturning of laws that denied legal marriage to same sex couples than the states could during all of those trials all over America. That's one of the reasons the laws were unconstitutional. Duh. You haven't figured that out yet?

  • 27. davepCA  |  September 19, 2015 at 5:01 pm

    …. and for making remarks like: "My My, someone must be on their period."

    Sheeesh, could you be any more juvenile? How embarrassing for you.

  • 28. Zack12  |  September 19, 2015 at 6:24 pm

    Personally, I think you are just frustrated that your kind of bigotry is dying out.
    Like the folks in TN trying to pass their absurd bill, you simply can't accept the fact your side lost and that simple moral disapproval of LGBT people isn't a valid reason to keep us as second class citizens anymore.

  • 29. SethInMaryland  |  September 20, 2015 at 5:01 pm

    "PPP is a known, left-leaning, democratic polling organization. The bias is obvious in the question. "

    WTF!!! bullshit in 2012 who had the most accurate polling of the election?????? PPP

  • 30. tx64jm  |  September 20, 2015 at 6:06 pm

    "…PPP withheld controversial elements of its methodology, to the extent it even has one, and treated its data inconsistently. The racial composition of PPP’s surveys was informed by whether respondents voted for Obama or John McCain in 2008, even though it wasn’t stated in its methodology. PPP then deleted the question from detailed releases to avoid criticism. Throughout its seemingly successful run, PPP used amateurish weighting techniques that distorted its samples—embracing a unique, ad hoc philosophy that, time and time again, seemed to save PPP from producing outlying results. The end result is unscientific and unsettling."

  • 31. aiislander  |  September 19, 2015 at 12:29 pm

    What's with the ridiculously skewed age breakdown? Why didn't they just call this the old people's poll? It IS Florida, but is Florida really THAT devoid of young people? Doesn't seem so when I go there.

  • 32. Nyx  |  September 19, 2015 at 2:37 pm

    From this PPP Poll…

    “…80% of participants responded via the phone, while 20% of respondents who did not have landlines conducted the survey over the internet.”

    Who answers their landline anymore?
    Who have decided to not have a landline?
    That said, how did they go about getting the "20%" online respondents?

  • 33. Mike_Baltimore  |  September 20, 2015 at 11:30 am

    "Who answers their landline anymore?"

    For one, me, and my mother, and my sister, and my sister-in-law. I have a reason – I have a large monitor and I still have to enlarge everything because of my inherited eye disease (FECD). I can't read what is on a cell phone's display.

    The poll said '80% of people responded by phone', not '80% of people responded by landline phone'. If a person responds by cell phone, they are responding by phone. Besides, there is no indication that 79% or 1% responded by landline, just that 80% responded by phone.

    And the older one is, the higher the probability is that there is a working landline phone in the household. The poll was taken in Florida, known for being a state with a high number of older people. Landline phones generally work better than cell phones during bad weather, including hurricanes. Florida is notorious for summer storms (the state is the lightening capital of the world), and hurricanes. And landline phones don't lose battery power, as landline phones don't use batteries. When the electricity goes off, a landline phone is capable of being used for days of continuous usage, unlike cell phones, which require periodic recharges.

    'Who have decided to not have a landline?'

    Not me, as explained above. And many of the elderly, such as those who reside in Florida, where the poll was taken. Besides, a landline phone is generally cheaper than a cell phone, especially when one expects most phone calls to be when one is home. The older one gets, the more they are at home, or in situations where they don't want phone calls – church, the doctor's office, the senior center, etc.

    'That said, how did they go about getting the "20%" online respondents?'

    How did you find yourself here? And PPP explains that 20% who did NOT have landline phones answered on the internet. It doesn't say 20% without phones (the term 'phones' includes 'cell phones', it says LANDLINE phones. Maybe PPP, on the original phone call, told the people they could complete the poll on the Internet by going to a specific address, and up to 20% chose to do the poll on the Internet, not on the phone. Maybe they did this because they do not have unlimited hours on their phone, maybe they were waiting for a call from someone, maybe they got the call while driving, etc. Maybe doing the poll at a later time was more convenient. PPP didn't explain why people chose to do the poll on the Internet, just that some chose that method.

  • 34. aiislander  |  September 20, 2015 at 11:46 am

    Mike: Look at the percentage of elderly polled. It's completely out of line with census figures and clearly designed to reach an anti SSM result. Yes, Florida has an older population than many states, but not at all in line with what this ridiculous poll tested. Their age demographic is unrealistically skewed to older voters.

  • 35. Mike_Baltimore  |  September 20, 2015 at 12:35 pm

    A legitimate polling company (and no one has claimed PPP is not legitimate) adjusts the raw results to the actual figures.

    For instance, I am white, but live in a city where the majority of people are not white. Polling firms, if they do not ask for race, probably put me down as 'African-American' because of where I live.

    One reason for the higher older population in the raw poll is that the polling company probably dialed random numbers, and older people are more apt to answer the phone than others (how many times have you heard that some cell phone users won't answer their phone if they do not recognize the number?).

    My understanding is that PPP conducts all its polling by phone, with no in-person contact. PPP is considered one of the more accurate of all polling firms, and regularly uses random number polling.

    Thus random calling could greatly skew the raw numbers, but when the poll results are announced, the legitimate companies will adjust the announced poll results to reflect the actual numbers of the city, state, nation, etc. to reflect the age, race, etc. of the polled jurisdiction.

  • 36. aiislander  |  September 20, 2015 at 12:41 pm

    So you're saying that they would "adjust" in other words, throw out oversampling of certain demographics? And how would they adjust for the undersampled demos? And why would they report such a skewed participation? Typically reliable polls show an actual demographic spread that represents the geographic area polled.

  • 37. bayareajohn  |  September 20, 2015 at 1:09 pm

    Good polling continues to seek a representative demographic sample through filtered polling. When a known demographic is underrepresented in the results, they continue polling but terminate the call if the respondent isn't in the underrepresented group. It may take 6 times as many calls to get a significant sample of missing demographics, and even then there's a growing likelihood of other sample issues. For example, 20-somethings you can't reach by your methods may differ significantly from those you can.,, and there might be a LOT of them.

  • 38. Mike_Baltimore  |  September 20, 2015 at 9:00 pm

    ". . . in other words, throw out oversampling of certain demographics?"

    50% is 50%, whether it is 2 of 4 or 2 million of 4 million. Legitimate polling firms don't throw out votes, but adjust the announced polling results to reflect the actual facts on the ground – in this case, the population breakdown by age of the state.

    Similar to the farmer who wants to feed his livestock 12% protein feed. The farmer takes 10% protein corn, then adds enough 40% protein soy bean meal to make the 'final product' equal to 12%.

  • 39. ianbirmingham  |  September 20, 2015 at 4:46 pm

    There are also people whose phone is a Google Voice number. Presumably PPP counted those as "phone" rather than "internet", though it's really both.

  • 40. bayareajohn  |  September 19, 2015 at 4:25 pm

    Upvote for comprehensive actual data, downvote for buying into (or creating) the lie:
    "So of those people who have actually been impacted by gay marriage, the negative impact outweighs the positive impact by a 2-to-1 margin."

    NO PART of this poll weighs or measure actual impact in any way… ONLY the fact an impact was REPORTED (it could be imaginary). To say that the poll means that negative impact outweighs the positive impact is pure and outrageous fictionalization of the study results.

    Presuming the numbers aren't fudged, it actually means that twice as many people reported that they felt a negative impact as reported that they felt a positive impact.

    Given that the LGBT community makes up between 2 and 10 percent of the population, depending on who and how you ask, I could extrapolate these same numbers to support (not prove) the conclusion that a far higher percentage of LGBT people report positive impact than the percentage of straight people who report negative impact.

    I'd have respected the poll more if they had even a voluntary and anecdotal "in what way has it impacted you?" question followup. The collective responses would tell more than the self-measured "I have an impact" binary reply. I suspect as do most of us here that the positive impacts are measurable and real. and the negative impacts are subjective and principally fear or faith based.

    IF the poll had stated that you had to explain the impact in order to report positive or negative, i suspect that the numbers would have been radically different.

  • 41. bayareajohn  |  September 20, 2015 at 12:20 am

    Taking this more vividly, JM suggests that two people who are pissed that I have the same rights they do now (two negative impacts) vs. I now having my rights recognized (one positive impact) means that "the negative impact outweighs the positive impact by a 2-to-1 margin". This is FOX-quality analysis!

    You need a new scale. Yours weighs only FAR right.

  • 42. tx64jm  |  September 20, 2015 at 9:17 am

    “I have had occasion in my life to defend marriage, to stand up for marriage, to believe in the hard work and challenge of marriage. So I take umbrage at anyone who might suggest that those of us who worry about amending the Constitution are less committed to the sanctity of marriage, or to the fundamental bedrock principle that it exists between a man and a woman, going back into the midst of history as one of the founding, foundational institutions of history and humanity and civilization, and that its primary, principal role during those millennia has been the raising and socializing of children for the society into which they are to become adults."

    – Hillary Clinton, Spoken on the floor of the Senate into the Congressional Record

    So she must be a bigot and FAR right?

  • 43. A_Jayne  |  September 20, 2015 at 9:41 am

    You forgot to mention the year in which she said it – 2004 – or any one of the many reasons she might have said it – running a political campaign, trying to get the votes of people who still believed it at the time – or even believing it herself at the time.

    Many (and, I dare say, most) people have since begun to understand that gay people are people – of equal value to and with equal rights in not only this country, but the world.

    Some people, of course, still cling to an out-dated concept of judgmentalism and condemnation of those whose lives do not comply with the demands of what used to be traditional religious dictates – to which thoughts and opinions they are entitled, of course, but the law in this country and many others no longer holds that position, and those who still do are, yes, considered to be bigots and on the FAR RIGHT.

  • 44. bayareajohn  |  September 20, 2015 at 10:59 am

    Note not only that this was 11 years ago, but that it was defending her opposition to changing the constitution to define LGBT out of marriage. Far right? No, in context, clearly center-left.

    So your presentation is intentionally disingenuous, as well as not responsive to the issue that you replied to.

    JM, I've frequently posted my opposition to the ridicule and automatic downvotes you get here, and defended the factual value of some of your posts. I've been mocked and insulted for it. Your recent posts show the deliberate negative twisting of fact and insinuation that earned you your reputation here. I hope for more of the factual and less of the FOX-NEWS from you if you choose to remain a "contributor".

  • 45. tx64jm  |  September 20, 2015 at 11:29 am

    "but that it was defending her opposition to changing the constitution to define LGBT out of marriage. Far right? No, in context, clearly center-left."

    But WHY was she opposed to changing the constitution? The answer is very clear … She believed that DOMA (another law she supported) made a constitutional amendment unnecessary. Do you think that if she had thought the Supreme Court was going to strike down DOMA as unconstitutional that she would still have opposed changing the constitution?

    So, in context, not center-left … clearly far right.

  • 46. bayareajohn  |  September 20, 2015 at 11:35 am

    FAR RIGHT was trying to add anti-LGBT to the constitution, and she was resisting. That doesn't make her far right. Consider that Bill Clinton signed DOMA/Don't Ask Don't Tell laws as a compromise effort to try to keep the far right from going further. By your standard, Bill Clinton was CLEARLY FAR RIGHT.

    Maybe you are seeing this from the wrong side… you know, your right, my left kind of thing?

  • 47. tx64jm  |  September 20, 2015 at 11:47 am

    "Consider that Bill Clinton signed DOMA/Don't Ask Don't Tell laws as an effort to try to keep the far right from going further…"

    Not so, my friend.

    ''That's complete nonsense," Evan Wolfson of Freedom to Marry told Metro Weekly in 2011. "There was no conversation about something 'worse' until eight years later. There was no talk of a constitutional amendment, and no one even thought it was possible — and, of course, it turned out it wasn't really possible to happen… That was never an argument made in the '90s.''

  • 48. aiislander  |  September 20, 2015 at 11:53 am

    Rubbish. Bill signed DOMA to stave off a Constitutional Amendment and anyone with half a brain knew it at the time.

  • 49. tx64jm  |  September 20, 2015 at 12:10 pm

    "In 1996, I was President of the Human Rights Campaign, and there was no real threat of a Federal Marriage Amendment. That battle would explode about eight years later, in 2004…"

  • 50. aiislander  |  September 20, 2015 at 12:27 pm

    I noted that you were quoting Evan Wolfson. And I would also disagree with him personally given the chance. Anyone with two brain cells to rub together knew that it would have been very possible at the time to gin up support for a CA to ban same sex marriage.

    Bill knew when signing on to both DOMA and DADT that neither could withstand long term constitutional scrutiny. He was playing the long game, the politics of the possible at the time. Whatever you may think about Bill Clinton, he is most certainly one of the smartest politicians of all time.

  • 51. bayareajohn  |  September 20, 2015 at 12:58 pm

    So to bring this back to your initial assertion that you seem to be rushing to drift from…

    You stand by calling Hillary Clinton a "far right" politician, so she's like Santorum, Cruz, and Huckabee… or … which one of us doesn't understand? Because your analysis should make her perhaps the best Republican candidate.

  • 52. bayareajohn  |  September 20, 2015 at 1:18 pm

    Damn, your shuffle worked on me too. Your statement calling Hillary FAR RIGHT was a diversion from the discussion of your misrepresenting the "weight" of impact in the PPP poll. Which you have now distanced yourself from by changing the subject.

    Well done. Evil, but skillful.

    "And I would have gotten away with it too, if it weren't for you meddling kids"

  • 53. tx64jm  |  September 20, 2015 at 4:57 pm

    Here is what you said:

    "JM suggests that two people who are pissed that I have the same rights they do now (two negative impacts) vs. I now having my rights recognized (one positive impact) means that "the negative impact outweighs the positive impact by a 2-to-1 margin". This is FOX-quality analysis! "

    But here is the actual question:

    Q1 Has the legalization of gay marriage in Florida
    had a positive or negative impact on your life,
    or has it not had any impact at all?

    See that? Its not asking if marriage equality has had a positive/negative impact … Its asking what impact the legalization has had. And a person could rightly answer, that having to pay higher taxes to as a result of same sex marriage, or higher health insurance premiums, that the legalization has had a negative impact on their life, rather than a positive one.

    See, you turned a question that can be read many ways, and imputed a negative motive, when all I did was report the data.

  • 54. bayareajohn  |  September 20, 2015 at 5:52 pm

    YOUR post concluded that:
    "So of those people who have actually been impacted by gay marriage, the negative impact outweighs the positive impact by a 2-to-1 margin."

    Those are your words, that conclusion is NOT in the referenced document. You chose to present the stats on how many people reported they "had an impact" as if it represented the not just ACTUAL impact, but then shifted to evaluation of the "weight" of impact. The word you chose wasn't "outnumbered" (a factual observation), it was "outweighed" (a value-laden subjective conclusion).

    That's what set me off here… the fact of you sharing the actual report (not just the headline as you mentioned) was a plus. Your choice of how to position and value the result, not so much.

    And when I asked about THAT VALUATION and asked you to clarify, you elected to reply with an 11 year old quote of Hillary, and redirected the conversation to this "proof" that she's a far right politico instead. Your diversion undercuts your innocent "all I did was report the data" plea now.

    If it was not what you meant when you said it, that's cool, we all phrase things poorly on occasion. Just say what you mean. Do you think this poll indicates that among "those people who have actually been impacted by gay marriage, the negative impact outweighs the positive impact by a 2-to-1 margin" or do you think it means "twice as many people responded that it impacted them negatively as positively, although what the impact might have been was not asked"?

    See that? You turned reporting the data into an unsupported politically charged position statement. If you don't see the difference, that's the real problem you have here that gets you such huge downvotes.

    Note that I'm the guy who has stuck up for you repeatedly. I'm in favor of clarity and information, and not of deceptive shading or of shunning the messenger.

  • 55. tx64jm  |  September 20, 2015 at 6:08 pm

    OK fair enough. Truce.

  • 56. bayareajohn  |  September 20, 2015 at 6:24 pm

    Truce. That's a cease-fire without resolution. OK, I'll go there with you and hope for better to come.

    I encourage you to try being a bit more direct with what you personally mean. I suspect you often are playing devil's advocate or worst-case reminder, and not personally invested in the positions and policies you post. If that's the case, your ambiguity calls into question your veracity and undermines your contribution (see your huge negative reputation that I still think is on the whole overblown). If I'm wrong and you truly are here to be disruptive, it's only sorta working, and mostly to your detriment.

    So if you are honestly trying to contribute, be mindful of the gap between reporting and interpreting… you don't get fans here by seeming to be the local FOX mouthpiece. Not that it appears you care much about fans.

  • 57. Zack12  |  September 21, 2015 at 1:14 am

    He's not trying to contribute.
    He is a troll who can't accept that his side lost and nothing more then that.

  • 58. bayareajohn  |  September 20, 2015 at 6:09 pm

    You say:
    "Its not asking if marriage equality has had a positive/negative impact … Its asking what impact the legalization has had."

    ABSOLUTELY BACKWARDS. It is EXACTLY, PRECISELY, IN CLEAR WORDS, asking "Has the legalization of gay marriage in Florida
    had a positive or negative impact on your life,
    or has it not had any impact at all?"

    It is ABSOLUTELY NOT asking "what impact the legalization has had". If it had, yes, a person could have answered many of the ways you suggest. But it wasn't the question, and no opportunity to explain is reported in the study. I can't see how you got this backward…

  • 59. Mike_Baltimore  |  September 20, 2015 at 1:10 pm

    In the 1960s, my mother was VERY against ME. By the 1990s, she was for ME.

    My second step-father was so conservative, he almost joined the John Birch Society in the late 1960s. In the late 1990s, he spent several hours talking about all kinds of experiences and issues with my lover. My second step-father was Korean War-era enlisted Army, my ;lover was Viet Nam-era enlisted Navy, my lover's father was full bird colonel Air Force.

    People's opinions CAN and DO change, some much faster than others, especially when they come to the realization that people who are homosexual are people.

    If you don't believe in equal rights for everyone, why are you still living in the United States? There are several nations who don't believe in equal rights for everyone. For instance, Saudi Arabia will not license women drivers; many nations will not allow a person to say anything bad about the leadership of the country; some nations will not allow people to divorce; etc.

  • 60. bayareajohn  |  September 20, 2015 at 1:23 pm

    Well said. And to expand on: "People's opinions CAN and DO change, some much faster than others, especially when they come to the realization that people who are homosexual are people."

    I'd add "even moreso when they come to the realization that many people they already know and respect and love are and always have been homosexual."

  • 61. Mike_Baltimore  |  September 20, 2015 at 4:55 pm

    Your first paragraph is spot on. The second, from my personal experience, might not always be quite true, as I learned of my mother's and second step-father's change of opinion through my sister. They were not aware of me being homosexual until just before they met my lover. (Living 500 miles distant, and not being in regular communication has both advantages and disadvantages.)

    And it was NOT just being nice, as they both attended Hans' funeral a few years later, even to the point of my mother asking if I could afford the plane tickets for them after letting me know they would attend.

    I understand where you are coming from, but in my case, their opinions about ME changed, even though it took several years.

  • 62. sfbob  |  September 20, 2015 at 2:43 pm

    Back in the year 2000 my current partner's dad angrily threw him out of the house because he was gay and had announced his attention to join his ex in another city. Over the past few years he has treated us as a married couple even though we aren't married, in fact he would not let his other kids share a bed in his house with their fiancees but has no problem with us doing so. Among his children our relationship is by far the longest-lasting. Both of his older sisters are divorced (one's now remarried). Perhaps–being devoutly Catholic–he would be less comfortable if we were to actually marry but in the absence of evidence to the contrary I continue to view his treatment of us as not only an incredible change of heart but as a positive embrace of our relationship.

  • 63. VIRick  |  September 19, 2015 at 10:33 pm

    "What's really interesting is the breakdown by race:"

    No. What's more interesting is that "Hispanic" is NOT a race. One can simultaneously be Hispanic/white/black/other, or any combination thereof. Instead, "Hispanic" is a cultural/linguistic identity, applicable to those who choose to self-identify to heritage from Latin America and/or the Iberian Peninsula.

    Spain legalized same-sex marriage over 10 years ago, in 2005. Portugal followed soon thereafter. This double-whammy (or triple whammy, if we include France with its overseas departments) had a profound effect on the more Eurocentric areas all over Latin America, so much so, that Argentina, Uruguay, Brasil, and Mexico all followed. In the meantime, and quite early on, same-sex civil unions were instituted in Colombia and Ecuador, with Chile and Costa Rica playing catch-up. Plus, Puerto Rico and the USVI have also now legalized same-sex marriage. And Bolivia is poised, given its brand-new gender-neutral family code.

    So, in reality, there's very little organized opposition to same-sex marriage throughout Latin America, other than some entrenched inertia in Central America and portions of the Caribbean, plus Paraguay, Peru, and Venezuela. Thus, over 80% of Latin America and all of Iberia has same-sex marriage or same-sex civil unions. But, most importantly, once done, it's done. There's little or no backlash. Thus, any "negativity" surmised to have been detected by this Florida poll among that state's "Hispanics," after-the-fact, is completely imaginary.

  • 64. allan120102  |  September 20, 2015 at 2:58 pm

    I hope Costa Rica and Panama legalized same sex marriage soon as they are the least homophobic countres in CA. Here in Honduras same sex marriage ,same sex civil unions and same sex adoptions are ban on our constitution. This was because a homophobic priest told legislators to do it because for the first time lgbt canpaigns open and as same sex marriage was legalized in massa and other countries the legislators banned them. I love my country and I hope one day I can marry the person i love

  • 65. VIRick  |  September 20, 2015 at 8:37 pm

    Allan, as you know, Latin America is very legalistic. However, once the legal hurdles have been overcome, and same-sex marriage or same-sex civil unions are in place, the opposition simply melts away.

    Here's a good example:

    In July, in Puerto Rico, Ada Conde Vidal, the lead plaintiff in the Puerto Rico marriage case, (wisely) invited same-sex couples from the neighboring Dominican Republic, Haiti, and Venezuela to participate in the mass, public marriage ceremony which she orchestrated to take place in the middle of the old colonial heart of San Juan, on the Paseo de la Princessa, more or less across the street from the Roman Catholic Cathedral of San Juan Bautista. Over 60 same-sex couples participated, mostly from Puerto Rico, and the several neighboring countries, but halves of certain couples, also turned out to be from Mexico, the USA, Italy, and Germany. The celebratory event was local headline news for days, complete without a single shred of negative feedback. In fact, the opposite occurred, with numerous religious denominations competing with each other to officiate.

    In addition, and quite fortuitously, from my next post, immediately below, notice the change which has occurred in Spain itself regarding this issue, with the Prime Minister of Spain himself, the leader of the conservative Popular Party, in attendance at the marriage of the former mayor of Vitoria, complete with the photo op of him smilingly situated between groom and groom.

    All the remaining homophobes in Latin America need to see how the erstwhile conservative homophobes in Spain have changed course, dropped their opposition, and are actually embracing same-sex couples at every opportunity.

  • 66. VIRick  |  September 20, 2015 at 12:35 pm

    Spain’s Conservative Ruling Party Leaders Attend Gay Wedding

    Madrid — The top brass of Spain’s ruling conservative Popular Party, including Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy, have attended the same-sex marriage of their deputy secretary-general, giving tacit approval to a law they once bitterly opposed. Javier Maroto exchanged vows with Josema Rodriguez late Friday, 18 September 2015, at a ceremony in the northern city of Vitoria attended by Rajoy, secretary-general Maria Dolores Cospedal, and other party dignitaries, the party said in a statement.

    “In Spain, the right to marriage is for everyone and we all share that message today,” Maroto said afterward. “Parties evolve,” he added. “Now my party and the government join in backing that right.” Maroto and Rodriguez have been partners in a same-sex relationship for 19 years. Apart from being a senior leader in the Popular Party, Maroto is a former mayor of Vitoria.

    Parliament legalized same-sex marriage in 2005 under a Socialist government, angering conservatives in once-staunchly Roman Catholic Spain. The Popular Party then challenged the law but Spain’s Constitutional Court, the highest in the land, upheld its legality. Now, a decade after voicing strong opposition to same-sex marriage, photographs at the ceremony that ended early Saturday showed Rajoy with other party leaders smiling broadly as they posed beside the two grooms.

  • 67. Tony MinasTirith  |  September 18, 2015 at 8:03 pm

    Lawmakers file 'Tennessee Natural Marriage Defense Act'

    Tennessee lawmakers promised some sort of legislative response after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled same-sex marriage legal for every state in the country.

    On Thursday two state Republican lawmakers unveiled their answer: a bill that they believe voids the Supreme Court decision and continues to define marriage under Tennessee law as a union between a man and a woman.

    "Natural marriage between one (1) man and one (1) woman as recognized by the people of Tennessee remains the law in Tennessee, regardless of any court decision to the contrary," the bill states.

    "Any court decision purporting to strike down natural marriage, including (a recent U.S. Supreme Court decision), is unauthoritative, void, and of no effect."

    Are they thinking they're going to get around Obergefell by changing the name of marriage in Tennessee to "Natural Marriage"? People are getting really desperate here.

  • 68. Mike_Baltimore  |  September 19, 2015 at 6:21 pm

    Assigned reading for all who support this male bovine droppings piece of a bill is Article VI of the US Constitution.

  • 69. guitaristbl  |  September 21, 2015 at 4:35 am

    Spending valuable legislative time to pass blatantly unconstitutional measures…Great work once again from GOP lawmakers..

  • 70. Sagesse  |  September 19, 2015 at 5:57 am

    Surprised this question doesn't come up more often.

    Justices asked to rule when out-of-state gay marriages became legal in Maine [Bangor Daily News]

  • 71. bayareajohn  |  September 19, 2015 at 5:13 pm

    I'd have to point out that the Supreme Court didn't MAKE SSM legal, it overruled all attempts and laws that tried to make it ILLEGAL. This means SSM's were ALWAYS LEGAL, notwithstanding years of suppression by states. The SCOTUS doesn't "make" law, they evaluate existing laws and force them to comply with the constitution by alteration or voiding if required. So while there is a date when the law was declared unconstitutional, it ALWAYS WAS UNCONSTITUTIONAL. Since enforcement was illegal, the marriage was legal from the start.

  • 72. VIRick  |  September 19, 2015 at 9:52 pm

    The retroactivity factor most frequently becomes an issue in divorce, and among married same-sex couples, so far, there simply haven't yet been that many divorces. But, give it more time, and we will continue to encounter more cases of this nature in more and more states, most particularly in the states which were in the final batch to legally-recognize same-sex marriage, given that, early on, so many same-sex couples travelled to the small handful of states (like Massachusetts or Iowa), or Canada, to be married, long before their marriages were legally-recognized in their home states.

  • 73. bayareajohn  |  September 20, 2015 at 12:38 am

    I hope for the trend to follow the "palimony" reasoning for unmarried couples contesting property splits. Couples who acted to marry in another district clearly should get (at LEAST) that as their joining dates, but couples who could not locally marry should not automatically be assumed to have mutually intended to join their property rights. The totality of the facts of the situation, duration, and expressed intent through contracts, wills, and other financial entanglements should be weighed and a fair settlement sought in each individual case. Similarly, just because a couple had a new opportunity to obtain a marriage license once the right became available, the fact that they may not have gotten married should not be an automatic bar to property split considerations… only another fact to be evaluated.

    Sigh… yes, I was once a divorce lawyer. I'm still recovering.

  • 74. Sagesse  |  September 20, 2015 at 4:42 am

    It is also a factor in adoption/birth certificate matters, and in inheritance/death certificate cases. And employee benefits. And social security.

    There are a number of circumstances where an obstructionist could argue the effective date of the 'marriage' for state purposes and therefore the entitlement to 'marriage' benefits.

  • 75. Mike_Baltimore  |  September 20, 2015 at 12:07 pm

    In Maryland, this question came up before ME was the law in the state. It was a decision by the AG that if a couple was married, the couple was married. The effective date of the marriage was the date of the marriage. Some in the state legislature wanted to impeach and convict the AG over this decision, then the Maryland Court of Special Appeals took up a case where an out of state marriage, then moving to Maryland, was a central issue. The ME issue had to be settled first, then the court could proceed with the other questions. The Court decided the AG's opinion was correct, and thus the out of state marriage was valid as of the date of the marriage. The Court of Appeals (highest court in the state of Maryland) declined to hear appeals of the case, thus the decision of the Court of Special Appeals stood.

    It was later that the Maryland legislature passed ME in the state, the governor signed the bill, and the people then voted on allowing ME in the state (by not overturning the legislature's vote on the law) when the anti-ME bigots gathered enough signatures to send the law to election.

    So in Maryland, the issue was decided before the state had ME, saving the courts from deciding when a marriage's effective date was the effective date in state.

  • 76. F_Young  |  September 20, 2015 at 9:02 am

    Judge who cited gay marriage ruling grants Signal couple a divorce after all

  • 77. Montezuma58_1  |  September 20, 2015 at 10:20 am

    Doesn't sound like the judge had a change of heart regarding his original flawed decision. The couples reached an agreement where the divorce was no longer contested.

  • 78. JayJonson  |  September 20, 2015 at 10:54 am

    The judge is still an a–hole, but he no doubt realized that he would be subject to a suit from the couple who had been denied a divorce and to judicial complaints for his a–holery.

  • 79. VIRick  |  September 20, 2015 at 9:23 pm

    I was most interested to note this comment:

    '"It is fairly unusual for a court to step up and reopen the matter on its own,' added Allan Ramsaur, executive director of the Tennessee Bar Association."

    Thus, the Tennessee Bar Association is paying very close attention to this judge's peculiar antics. It is still entirely possible that judicial complaints will be filed.

    Hamilton County (Chattanooga) is one of Tennessee's most populous. Signal Hill is an older, affluent town immediately west of Chattanooga. It is perched on the top of Signal Hill, overlooking the Tennessee River and equally affluent Lookout Mountain to its south.

  • 80. F_Young  |  September 21, 2015 at 5:40 am

    VIRick: "…..Hamilton County (Chattanooga) is one of Tennesee's….."

    Rick, you seem to have travelled over the entire US!

  • 81. VIRick  |  September 20, 2015 at 11:28 am

    Per Equality Case Files:

    Here's an up-date on the status of "Marie v. Moser," the Kansas marriage case in federal court which continues to keep dragging on, seemingly without end.

    On 10 August 2015, the Court granted the plaintiffs’ motion for summary judgment on the claims seeking declaratory relief, but deferred its ruling on the plaintiffs’ claims seeking injunctive relief. It gave the parties an opportunity to supplement the undisputed facts material to the plaintiffs’ motion for summary judgment on their claims for injunctive relief. Earlier this past week, on 15 September 2015, the state defendants and the county defendants filed their supplements:

    State Defendants' supplements are here:
    County Defendants' supplements are here:

    The Plaintiffs will now have 21 days from 15 September 2015 to reply to these supplemental statements.

  • 82. Rick55845  |  September 20, 2015 at 9:03 pm

    Man, what a boring waste this thread is. All this stupid sparring with troll tx64jm. The vast majority of the thread is devoted to it. Don't you have anything better to do? No, I'm not talking to the troll. Trolls obviously get off on this. I'm talking to the rest of you.

    Give it a fuckin' rest, and let's wait and see if there's any real news tomorrow. Go watch some hot porn, get your rocks off, schmooze with your baby doll, whatever. God knows, jousting with a troll is frickin' pointless. You can unseat them off their high horses, run them through with a sword, and they just N.E.V.E.R…F.U.C.K.I.N…D.I.E.

    Scottie, a new thread, puleaaaaasssssse.

  • 83. gay_avenger  |  September 21, 2015 at 6:20 am

    Agree! Those guys, and the troll, need to get a life.

    "All this stupid sparring with troll tx64jm. The vast majority of the thread is devoted to it. Don't you have anything better to do? No, I'm not talking to the troll. Trolls obviously get off on this. I'm talking to the rest of you."

  • 84. Tony MinasTirith  |  September 21, 2015 at 8:59 am

    Totally right Rick and Avenger. Tx is a begnign cancer to this forum all by itself, but when someone gets into a pissing contest with the troll, well all it does is divert attention and energy away from the main cause of this forum… If this cancer is picked at it continues to spread, that'll mean less and less people coming here, and eventual death to an already weakened platform. And that's would please the troll to no end.

    On a brighter note, it's Monday Morning… let's hope we get some good news out of KY, and Hopefully Judge Bunning finds Kim Davis in violation of his order not to interfere with the deputy clerks issuing licenses, and takes appropriate action.

    And in other good ME news, a senate committee in Australia, has recommended against a government sponsored non binding and multi million dollar plebiscite, and instead recommended that the legislature just handle the SSM issue and be given a free vote. The leader of the plebiscite initiative in the senate has now changed his mind and concurs with the senate committee. The dam holding back marriage equality is beginning to show stress fractures, and is only supported by a minority which is made up of church officials, religious bigots and opportunist politicians. With the dam weakening in Australia, the supporters just need to keep on pushing and getting louder, because Marriage Equality will be the Law of the Land down under… it's no longer a matter of if, but when. Sooner.. or later… and will the coalition government be washed away when the people of Australia get what they want and what they know is just.

  • 85. VIRick  |  September 21, 2015 at 2:59 pm

    Per Equality Case Files:

    Today, 21 September 2015, we have had some significant movement in "Inniss v. Aderhold," the Georgia class-action marriage case.

    In the Parties' Joint Status Report, in which the parties have agreed that judgment should be entered in favor of the plaintiffs:

    "State Defendants’ [11th Circuit] status report argued that Plaintiffs’ case has become moot after "Obergefell." … After further discussion, however, the parties have reached agreement that entry of judgment is appropriate, as described further below."

    "…the parties agree that the Court should enter judgment in favor of Plaintiffs, decreeing that:

    "1. Any source of Georgia law that denies same-sex couples the freedom to marry, or denies recognition for their valid marriages from another jurisdiction, including but not limited to Georgia Constitution art. I, § IV, para. I, and Official Code of Georgia Annotated §§ 19-3-3.1, 19-3-30, violates the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution and 42 U.S.C. § 1983, and may not be enforced against Plaintiffs or any other same-sex couple.

    "2. Defendants and their officers, employees, agents, and all other individuals under their supervision, direction, or control are permanently enjoined from enforcing any source of Georgia law that denies same-sex couples the freedom to marry, or denies recognition for their valid marriages from another jurisdiction, including but not limited to Georgia Constitution art. I, § IV, para. I, and Official Code of Georgia Annotated §§ 19-3-3.1, 19-3-30. See, e.g., Robicheaux, No. 2:13-cv-05090, ECF No. 142; De Leon, No. 5:13-cv-00982, ECF No. 98.

    "Plaintiffs have agreed not to seek fees or costs in this matter."

  • 86. VIRick  |  September 21, 2015 at 3:05 pm

    I've posted this Georgia court news item here, on last Friday's thread, because all the reply buttons on today's thread have mysteriously been muted (after it was "fixed").

  • 87. davepCA  |  September 21, 2015 at 3:49 pm

    Hi VIRick,

    That's odd. The REPLY buttons are working for me, in both this thread and under the latest article. You may want to contact the site directly about that.

  • 88. sfbob  |  September 21, 2015 at 4:47 pm

    I've had problems like that before. They appear mysteriously and then disappear mysteriously. Nobody's ever been able to give me a satisfactory explanation of the problem.

  • 89. VIRick  |  September 21, 2015 at 6:57 pm

    ACLU Says Kim Davis Is “Interfering” With Deputy Clerks, Seeks Court Action

    Rowan County KY Clerk Kim Davis interfered with her deputy clerks by altering marriage licenses after she was released from jail for contempt of court, according to a court filing on Monday, 21 September 2015, made by four Kentucky couples represented by the ACLU. “Davis immediately began interfering with the Deputy Clerk’s issuance of marriage licenses upon returning to her office on 14 September 2015,” the lawyers wrote in the filing.

    The couples are asking District Court Judge David L. Bunning to order Davis to begin issuing marriage licenses without recent changes. She had modified the forms to say they were issued by a “notary public” and “pursuant to a federal court order.” Those alterations raise questions about the licenses’ validity and stigmatize same-sex couples, the plaintiffs argue.

    Davis has protested her office issuing marriage licenses due to her religious objections to same-sex couples marrying, a position that led her to be jailed after being held in contempt for failing to follow Bunning’s initial order that she end her “no marriage licenses” policy. If Davis were to disobey the further order requested by the plaintiffs on Monday, their lawyers argue that Bunning should fine Davis and temporarily reassign marriage license duties to another entity in a receivership. The couples do not request that Davis be sent to jail.

    “The marriage licenses currently issued by the Rowan County Clerk’s Office are so materially altered that they create a two-tier system of marriage licenses throughout state,” says the motion filed in the District Court for the Eastern District of Kentucky. “The adulterated marriage licenses received by Rowan County couples will effectively feature a stamp of animus against the LGBT community, signaling that, in Rowan County, the government’s position is that LGBT couples are second-class citizens unworthy of official recognition and authorization of their marriage licenses but for this Court’s intervention and Order. Davis’ decision to significantly interfere with the marriage licenses being issued as of this Court’s 8 September 2015 Order not only violates the Court’s clear directive, but it also has resulted in material alterations to those licenses that render their validity questionable at best,” the plaintiffs argue in the motion submitted to Bunning on Monday, 21 September 2015.

    The plaintiffs ask Bunning to require deputy clerks to issue marriage licenses “in the same form or manner as those that were issued on or before 8 September 2015,” and to bar Davis from altering marriage licenses. Violating such an order, the plaintiffs argue, should result in fines against Davis to “coerce” her into compliance, and in Bunning placing the clerk’s office in a “receivership for the limited purpose of issuing marriage licenses.”

    Three of the couples who sued Davis initially obtained licenses from Davis’s office before the forms were modified to language about being issued “pursuant to court order” or a “notary public.” Those couples’ licenses simply said they were issued by “Rowan County” instead of including Davis’s name. The fourth couple has not applied for a marriage license at all. The Monday filing notes that the plaintiffs filed Monday’s motion on behalf of themselves and the pending class of all couples seeking to marry in the county, another request still pending before Bunning.
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