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69 Comments

  • 1. Randolph_Finder  |  September 25, 2015 at 8:20 am

    So Boehner's resignation. Does it help or hurt the LGBT movement?

  • 2. Randolph_Finder  |  September 25, 2015 at 11:28 am

    I'm an American (USAian) living 10 miles north of DC and fairly politically active. I'm not sure why the comparison for US & Canada here…

  • 3. Mike_Baltimore  |  September 25, 2015 at 5:12 pm

    Rumors are that the leading contender is Kevin McCarthy, who by all accounts I've heard is not quite as conservative as Bo-ner. Since McCarthy is currently Majority Leader, it also means he knows the 'players' better than just about anyone else.

    I don't expect McCarthy to be a friend, but I don't expect him to go out of his way to intentionally hurt the GLBT community. He will hurt us, though, because he needs support from CONs to get his programs through, and the CONs have every intention to stop, or at least hinder for long periods of time, legislation to help the poor, handicapped, immigrants, GLBT community, etc.

  • 4. Tony MinasTirith  |  September 25, 2015 at 8:52 am

    I don't think his resignation makes a difference. It's who takes over and what the new leadership decides to focus on (Social Issues or Jobs/Economy/Taxes). If the vacancy leads to a more right of center tea partier taking over, then that will not be good for GLBT progress. Not that a more establishment republican in Boehnors roll will necessarily help…but it could hurt less. Obviously it would be preferable if a more moderate republican or libertarian leaning republicans led the house (and senate) instead of the more conservative right leaning wing.

    We have to remember that we had support for ME from a few republican Judges (Posner who wrote for the 7th circuit for one, Judge Bunning, Judge Vaughn Walker,) and others. ME came to NY because a few reasonable and moderate republicans crossed the aisle. We have nationwide ME because of Republican Anthony Kennedy's 5th vote and eloquent opinion for The Court. There were even a few Republican Governors, like Susanna Martinez of NM, Tom Corbett, of PA Chris Christie of NJ, and Brian Sandoval of NV, who didn't put up much of a fight after the Federal Courts laid waste to their state's bans. These republican governors pretty much just rolled over and accepted the courts decision as the law of the land and moved on. If that type Republican inherit's Boehner's position, that will be a positive for the GLBT movement. If the tea partiers and religious conservatives like Ted Cruz and former Senator Santorum take over leadership of the House, that will be a very very bad thing.

  • 5. Rick55845  |  September 25, 2015 at 9:33 am

    It wasn't the Federal courts in NM, but rather the State Supreme Court that decided the issue after several law suits in State district courts. I'm not sure about the other states. Regardless, the distinction is just a minor nitpick that doesn't materially alter your observations.

  • 6. Tony MinasTirith  |  September 25, 2015 at 10:48 am

    right. I should have said "The Federal and State Courts". With over 60 court decisions, federal and state, It's hard to keep track of which court did what. Thanks 4 the correction.

  • 7. Bruno71  |  September 25, 2015 at 10:50 am

    In PA and NV, it was federal courts, in NJ it was the NJSC, although it followed shortly after the overturning of DOMA at SCOTUS. I'd also say that Christie didn't really roll over, having vetoed legislation and kept the court case going for a bit even after DOMA was declared unconstitutional. It's just at the end that he gave up when the NJSC signaled how they would rule in our favor.

  • 8. Tony MinasTirith  |  September 25, 2015 at 11:19 am

    Christie is a BIG BIG Man….it takes a long time for him to roll over. "It's just at the end that he gave up when the NJSC signaled how they would rule in our favor." He knew when to give up. No one gives up in the first half when you're tied. He did what he was expected to do. He knew when to hold them and when to fold them, and when to walk away.

  • 9. Randolph_Finder  |  September 25, 2015 at 11:29 am

    Agreed. Christie basically gave in at the right point in time for him. Not a friend, not a bitter ender, but perhaps a realist.

  • 10. Tony MinasTirith  |  September 25, 2015 at 11:53 am

    I think you picked an accurate description of Christie…A Realist.

  • 11. jcmeiners  |  September 26, 2015 at 2:24 pm

    Instead of realist I'd call him a craven opportunist.

  • 12. VIRick  |  September 25, 2015 at 10:07 am

    It was also the state courts in New Jersey which overturned the ban there.

    Still, Christie put up quite a fight, several times vetoing legislation which was intended to change the law. Finally, Christie gave up when he realized he couldn't veto the courts. He only ceased and "magnanimously" threw his hands in the air after the New Jersey Supreme Court unanimously refused to issue a stay in the pending marriage case there. It was ugly until the bitter end.

    During that same time interval, only the governor of Maine, LePage, was a bigger asshat than Christie.

    However, in Pennsylvania, in addition to governor Corbett, the federal judge who overturned that state's ban, John Jones, was also a Republican. In Kentucky, Judge John Heyburn, who overturned Kentucky's ban, was nominated and appointed, based upon the recommendation of Mitch McConnell.

  • 13. Tony MinasTirith  |  September 25, 2015 at 11:07 am

    All the republican's governors put up a fight, with possibly the exception of Susanna Martinez…But once "The Court", federal or state ruled, they accepted it and didn't pursue endless appeals all the way from their circuit and up and to SCOTUS. The point is, that some Republicans and including governors know when a lost cause is a lost cause and when it's time to accept the inevitable. Another example of a conservative that brought about ME for an entire country, while not a republican, was David Cameron. So my point is there are conservative and there are CONSERVATIVES. We need to distinguish between libertarian conservatives, fiscal conservatives, and religious/evangelical conservatives. While Democrats are generally going to be our friends….in the places where conservatives overwhelm or have jerrymandered, it would be best to identify, clarify, and classify, where among the conservative scale they are. We'd be better off with a Gary Johnson, Ron Paul, Rob Portman, ileana ros-lehtinen, Anthony Kennedy, than we would with a Cruz, Santorum, Hucksterby, Palin, Allen West, or Michelle Bachman. One easy way to tell the worst of the worst republicans is to listen to which ones insist or insinuate that Obama is a Muslim. Those we DO NOT want in government.

    In any event, it will be CRITICAL that all Democrats and Liberterians vote for the Democratic Candidate or at least against the Republican Presidential Candidate. The 2016 and 2020 Presidential will be two of the most critical in decades. It's more than likely that whomever is President in 2016 and 2010 will solidify "The Court" as either solidly Liberal or solidly Conservative for the next 25 to 30 years. As they say in Chicago…Vote Early and Vote Often!

  • 14. A_Jayne  |  September 25, 2015 at 7:13 pm

    One other (R) Gov exception – Brian Sandoval in NV – once the 9th Circuit decided sexual orientation was a suspect class (in SmithKline), NV's (D) AG (Catherine Cortez-Masto, now running for Harry Reid's seat with his endorsement) advised the Gov they would lose at the 9th, so the Gov agreed to stop the state's defense of the case (which the state had won at District Court, courtesy Robert Jones, (R-Mormon) who went on to recuse himself from writing a correct injunction after the 9th published its opinion in the case and remanded it.)

    Also, when the state dropped its defense of the case was when the 9th panel decided to let CPM (Coalition for the Protection of Marriage) testify at the hearing (which the 9th had to hold due to Jones upholding the state's bans). CPM, as you may remember, kept trying to elevate appeals after it lost, but kept getting struck down for lack of standing.

  • 15. Zack12  |  September 26, 2015 at 12:51 pm

    There have been some Republicans on our side but by and large they are the anti-gay party and the judges they've appointed have reflected that, especially the George W ones.
    Simply look at what happened with the marriage bans at the circuit level with W judges. Only Jerome Holmes of the 10th ruled in our favor.
    Jeffery Sutton, Deborah Cooke, Norman Randy Smith (Prop H8), Lavenski Smith (Bruning) heard gay marriage bans pre and post Windsor and all ruled to uphold them.
    And of course at SCOTUS, we know how Roberts and Alito view us, with complete and utter contempt.
    Republican judges like Posner are becoming rare, right wing hacks like the names I mentioned are becoming the norm.
    They aren't there to do any kind of justice, only to help push right wing viewpoints.
    That is why the next election will be so important, the future of SCOTUS and the courts and our future is at stake.

  • 16. A_Jayne  |  September 26, 2015 at 1:13 pm

    Absolutely, and especially this part: "That is why the next election will be so important, the future of SCOTUS and the courts and our future is at stake."

    I was just correcting the record in the comment above mine, and am pleased (and relieved) that, since NV did end up with an (R) party gov, at least he isn't a TeaPot type (R). (Tho I would argue with many things he backs, I think he and I could have a reasonable discussion – he wouldn't just sit there with his hands over his ears, saying, "La, la, la, can't hear you" – know what I mean?)

  • 17. Zack12  |  September 27, 2015 at 12:47 am

    Brian Sandoval is about the only one I would trust and even so, I still wouldn't feel comfortable having him pick judges for the various courts around the country.
    By and large, we've made gains because of Democratic judges, not Republicans.
    As for Susana Martinez, all you need to know about about her is the fact she signed a bill to help straight veterans and their families get back on their feet and then vetoed a bill that would have done the same for veterans in a same sex relationship.
    That alone shows how vile she is.
    The fact she knew there was no way to win against a unanimous State Supreme Court verdict or that a marriage ban wouldn't get through a State House and Senate controlled by Democrats doesn't mean she isn't a bigot.
    Like Christie in New Jersey, she simply knew she was in a fight she couldn't win.

  • 18. davepCA  |  September 25, 2015 at 8:54 pm

    And not to paint a rosy picture of the GOP in general, but remember that there was an Amicus Brief signed by about 300 republican politicians submitted to SCOTUS arguing in favor of overturning the marriage bans.

  • 19. GregInTN  |  September 25, 2015 at 9:01 am

    Kim Davis has filed her response to the Governor's motion to dismiss the
    suit Davis filed against him.

    Link to news article:
    Kentucky clerk Kim Davis blames governor for legal woes http://www.kentucky.com/2015/09/24/4054698/kentuc

    Link to filing on Equality Case Files: http://files.eqcf.org/cases/015-cv-00044-123/

    She says that if not for the Governor's edict, the plaintiffs suit would have been filed against the Governor instead of her. Huh?

  • 20. Tony MinasTirith  |  September 25, 2015 at 9:14 am

    The Kim Davis story only lives on because of Matt Staver, and the two political leeches opportunists Hucksterbee and Cruz. That Matt Staver character is like a fungus…he's grown roots in Rowan County and not even bleach can get rid of him.

  • 21. RnL2008  |  September 25, 2015 at 10:31 am

    The plaintiffs NEVER had a reason to file their lawsuit against the Governor, it was Kim Davis who REFUSED to do her job and it was Kim Davis who used her religious beliefs to DISCRIMINATE and it HAS been Kim Davis being pulled like a puppet from lawyers who could give a rat's azz about her personally……yet, she is to STUPID to figure that out!!!

    Kim Davis made this mess and Kim Davis alone will have to CLEAN it up!!!

  • 22. Tony MinasTirith  |  September 25, 2015 at 12:21 pm

    I'm getting sick of hearing about Kim Davis. I'd bet the number of American's who see her and her atty clogging up the courts with their endless court filings, day after day with are starting to grow tired of seeing her crocodile tears. She is going to over play her hand.

  • 23. RnL2008  |  September 25, 2015 at 12:25 pm

    I TOTALLY agree with ya Sweetie…….either throw her azz in a Federal Jail cell until she is in FULL compliance with the ruling from SCOTUS and the Judge………this media attention is out of control and soon others may think they can do it as well.

    She can resign at ANY time, but she DOESN'T want to…….well, to DAMN bad!!!

  • 24. jjcpelayojr  |  September 25, 2015 at 3:06 pm

    One thing I am interested in though is the suit her deputy clerk filed stating that she altered the forms without authorization from the Governor. Has there been an update or hearing scheduled for that?

  • 25. RnL2008  |  September 25, 2015 at 3:11 pm

    I've not heard of any other information regarding the lawsuit by the Deputy Clerk. Sorry 🙁

  • 26. stevew999  |  September 25, 2015 at 3:18 pm

    Not a lawsuit. It was a status report from the clerk (they all filed them, per the judge's order).

    Plaintiffs filed a motion on this issue, though…haven't seen anything happen with it yet.

  • 27. RnL2008  |  September 25, 2015 at 3:21 pm

    That's correct….my bad…..lol!!!

  • 28. Rakihi  |  September 25, 2015 at 11:02 am

    Kim Davis switches parties, joins the GOP
    http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/09/25/us-usa-

    She says the Democratic Party no longer represents people like here. Well, duh.

  • 29. guitaristbl  |  September 25, 2015 at 11:32 am

    Yeahhh finally one more embarassment leaves the democratic party *sigh of relief*
    Yes yes she should join the GOP and also be a candidate for the kentucky legislature with the GOP. How many lunatics can one party accomodate ? We will soon find out with the GOP !

  • 30. Tony MinasTirith  |  September 25, 2015 at 12:03 pm

    Do the republicans even want her….besides photo-op bombers Cruz and Huxterby?

  • 31. RnL2008  |  September 25, 2015 at 12:26 pm

    She NEVER really was a Democrat and if she thinks the Republicans care about her pathetic azz, well….guess what….they DON'T either!!!

  • 32. Shmoozo  |  September 26, 2015 at 11:14 am

    And Democrats across the nation cheer.

  • 33. VIRick  |  September 25, 2015 at 11:19 am

    Germany: Bundesrat Approves Same-Sex Marriage Bill

    Today, 25 September 2015, Germany’s Bundesrat approved a same-sex marriage bill. The Bundesrat is comprised of representatives from Germany’s 16 states. The German federal council (Bundesrat) has approved the bill recognizing same-sex marriage by a majority of votes from representatives of the country’s major political parties.

    The bill, which includes reforms to German civil law, was submitted by the governments of five federal states, which are dominated by the coalition of the Social Democrats, the Greens and the Left, EFE news reported. German Chancellor Angela Merkel has made clear in recent public remarks that marriage, for her, is the union of a man and a woman, but she acknowledged that there is currently a debate between other different views, even within her Christian Democratic Union party. The Social Democratic party is in favor of recognizing same-sex marriage, although its legalization was never stated before forming the coalition with Merkel.

    The bill now goes to the popularly-elected 630-seat Bundestag, which is dominated by legislators from the Christian Democratic Union (254 seats) and the Social Democrats (193 seats.) http://www.joemygod.com/2015/09/25/germany-bundes

    Brief history: On 5 June 2015, the states of Baden-Württemberg, North Rhine-Westphalia, Rhineland-Palatinate, Schleswig-Holstein, and Thuringia submitted a bill to the Federal Council (Bundesrat). On 12 June 2015, it had its first reading and was sent to the committees. It was approved on second reading, and sent to the Federal Diet (Bundestag) today, 25 September 2015.

  • 34. guitaristbl  |  September 25, 2015 at 11:38 am

    It stands no chance. Even social democrats will vote against it as the german political culture takes very seriously the art of compromise in a governmental coalition and since the issue was not part of the agreement between CDU/CSU and the socialists it will be voted down by everyone. Probably only the left and the greens will vote in favour.
    Merkel is a bigot but her party at its majority could vote in favour of ME – its their bavarian ultra conservative partners that block the whole thing. Bavaria is like Germany's Texas..

  • 35. Tony MinasTirith  |  September 25, 2015 at 12:15 pm

    Has anyone heard what the polling of the German people looks like on the issue? What do the German People want? When a tide swell of a country's citizens are in favor of marriage equality, then it's a matter of time. The politicians can only hold back the tide of a citizenry in favor of marriage equality so long. The Bundestag may quash it for now…but it's a great sign that the Bundsrat is in favor…as are the Social Democrats.

  • 36. Mike_Baltimore  |  September 26, 2015 at 11:32 am

    Tony MinasTirith

    "In January 2013, a poll conducted by the YouGov found that German support for same-sex marriage is 66% for, 24% opposed and 10% don’t know. Support for same-sex adoption is 59% for, 31% opposed and 11% don’t know."
    ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Recognition_of_same… )

    Took me less that three minutes to find it, and notice that the poll is almost three years old. The numbers have probably stayed the same, or shifted even more in our favor.

  • 37. StraightDave  |  September 25, 2015 at 11:49 am

    That seemed out of nowhere, or is it a hollow victory that will be quickly brushed aside by the Bundestag?
    Does Merkel have veto power or enough dirty-tricks clout to enforce her views on the coalition?
    As I understand it, the public is supportive, which puts Merkel somewhere in Julia Gillard land.

  • 38. jcmeiners  |  September 27, 2015 at 7:34 am

    In the German parliamentary system, the chancellor has very strong control over her majority caucus. Basically, they follow the agenda that was initially negotiated by the party leaders when the coalition that elects the chancellor was formed. Any departures from this are usually again negotiated but the party leaders, with the chancellor setting the agenda. Votes in the Bundestag are almost always predetermined; it's very rare that members are given the freedom to break party discipline and vote their conscience. Usually only on grave moral matters. I wouldn't rule out that marriage equality will eventually qualify and a vote could go against the chancellor, but I wouldn't hold my breath. It's more likely next time a new governing coalition is formed, marriage equality will become part of the platform and eventually be enacted that way.

  • 39. VIRick  |  September 27, 2015 at 10:47 am

    In the meantime, though, as a less than gentle reminder, the states will continue to push for legislative change in the Bundesrat. The ones which backed the just-passed legislation cover all geographic areas from south to north (Baden to Schleswig) and from west to east (Rhineland to Thuringia), as well as all major historical religious groupings. Rhineland-Palatinate is Catholic, Schleswig-Holstein is Lutheran, and Württemberg is Evangelical. In addition, it might also be worth noting that of all the German states, North Rhine-Westphalia, which backed the legislation, is the most populous, as it covers all of the highly-industrialized Ruhr.

  • 40. davepCA  |  September 25, 2015 at 9:10 pm

    At this point, I'm a bit perplexed as to why there have not been any attempts to legalize marriage for same sex couples in the German courts. Anybody have any insight as to why there have not been any challenges to the bans taken to the courts?

  • 41. JayJonson  |  September 26, 2015 at 6:37 am

    Good question. The German Constitutional Court has made several positive rulings in favor of gay couples seeking equal rights by strengthening the civil unions or registered partnerships there, especially affording equal benefits under tax policy.

  • 42. VIRick  |  September 26, 2015 at 3:29 pm

    Another same-sex marriage bill has been approved by Germany’s Bundesrat, though it is unlikely to proceed further due to opposition from Angela Merkel’s government.

    Unlike the Bundestag (main chamber of the Germany Parliament), where Chancellor Merkel’s Grand Coalition holds control, the Bundesrat (equivalent to the Upper House/Senate) is controlled by the 16 state governments, with a current left-wing majority. A coalition of the Social Democrats, the Greens and the Left this week backed a bill in the Bundesrat that would recognise unions between same-sex couples, despite Chancellor Merkel’s insistence it is between a man and a woman. However, it is unlikely to make any real difference, as legislation on the issue is unlikely to pass the Bundestag without the government’s blessing

    Germany allows same-sex couples to enter into registered life partnerships that provide some of the benefits of marriage. But the Chancellor’s CDU/CSU coalition continues to oppose same-sex marriage. Of the 631 seats in the Bundestag, Merkel’s Grand Coalition holds 503 seats. Though the Social Democrats, part of the governing coalition, holds 193 seats, it is bound by the coalition agreement. http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2015/09/26/germanys-bun

  • 43. SethInMaryland  |  September 26, 2015 at 3:39 pm

    Both Germany and Australia make me so mad when it comes to this issue. They both should have been amongst the early countries to legalize marriage equality.

  • 44. Zack12  |  September 25, 2015 at 11:41 am

    All I can say to Kim Davis leaving the Democratic party, don't let the door hit you on the way out.

  • 45. Rakihi  |  September 25, 2015 at 3:34 pm

    South Dakota agrees to pay $242,000 to the attorneys of the couples who challenged the state's marriage ban.

    It's a shame that the expense is borne by ALL South Dakota residents rather than just those who were responsible for enacting the measure in the first place.

    http://www.idahostatesman.com/2015/09/25/4005098/

  • 46. VIRick  |  September 25, 2015 at 4:44 pm

    Per Equality Case Files:

    Today, 25 September 2015, in "Rosenbrahn v. Daugaard," the South Dakota marriage case, the parties have reached a settlement for attorney fees and costs. The state will pay for the plaintiffs' attorney fees, as follows:

    $144,595 – in the district court case
    $97,405 – in the 8th Circuit Court appeal, for a total of $242,000

    This will be distributed as:
    $182,427.17 to Madia Law, LLC
    $ 59,572.83 to NCLR

    District Court stipulation is linked here: http://files.eqcf.org/cases/414-cv-04081-80/

    The 8th Circuit Court stipulation is here: http://files.eqcf.org/cases/15-1186-stipulation-a

  • 47. JayJonson  |  September 26, 2015 at 6:39 am

    South Dakota residents are the ones who enacted the same-sex ban and elected the officials who enforced and defended it, so I will be quite content if they get the message that voting for discrimination might eventually hit them in the pocketbook.

    I am especially happy that almost $60,000 of the settlement goes to the National Center for Lesbian Rights!

  • 48. VIRick  |  September 26, 2015 at 12:02 pm

    Indeed! South Dakota's elected AG Jackley was particularly adamant in pursuing the appeal to the 8th Circuit Court, a late, foolish, useless appeal, done well after the handwriting was on the wall, and which has now cost the state just over 40% of the plaintiffs' total legal expense (in addition to whatever it cost the state in time and expense for its own defense during the drawn-out appeals process).

    But if anyone wants to see some serious expense, wait until we get to the settlement stage in the multiple cases from both Florida and Alabama, as both will be in the multi-millions, easily surpassing the costs in the federal marriage cases from Kentucky and Michigan, the two most expensive yet filed.

  • 49. Zack12  |  September 26, 2015 at 3:47 pm

    You have to understand that for the most part, Democrats and Republicans merely view the AG's office as a stepping stone to a higher office.
    If Jackley hadn't appeal the ruling against the ban, that would be used against him in a primary.
    I imagine if you gave him a truth serum he would agree with everything you typed but for the sake of politics, he had to push ahead.
    Sad that's how it is.

  • 50. VIRick  |  September 25, 2015 at 5:22 pm

    Texas: Tarrant County Clerk Refuses to File Same-Sex Couple's Affidavit for Common-Law Marriage (But Be Sure to Read "Up-Date" in last Paragraph)

    On 24 September 2015, at the Arlington Sub-Courthouse, a clerk is told to only accept documents that date the marriage as of 26 June 2015. A gay couple trying to file an affidavit of common-law marriage with Tarrant County say they were stopped by the clerk at the Arlington Sub-Courthouse, who refused to accept the filing. The men, who asked not to be identified at this time, have been together 23 years. The Texas common-law marriage code allows a couple who has presented itself as married to file a common-law claim rather than apply for a marriage license.

    The clerk at the Tarrant County office in Arlington, reportedly acting under instruction from someone else, would only accept the document if the men changed the date to 26 June 2015. Their attorney, Jon Nelson, disagreed for a number of reasons. “This is an affidavit,” he said. “What the state of Texas is asking my clients to do is file a false affidavit and subject themselves to criminal penalties. Besides, rather than apply for a currently-dated marriage license, this couple needs to prove they were married in 2009 to access retirement benefits."

    One of the men worked for the city of Dallas and retired six years ago. When the Dallas Employee Retirement Fund was discussing extending benefits to same-sex couples last year, board members discussed current retirees and agreed that legal out-of-state marriages would be recognized. When Councilman Lee Kleinman addressed common-law marriage, there wasn’t agreement, but Kleinman insisted in all cases same-sex couples would be treated equally with opposite-sex couples. The board agreed that retired employees in same-sex relationships who can prove they were married at the time of retirement would receive benefits equal to other married couples.

    Texas is one of just nine states that still has common-law marriage, and there are two kinds of common-law marriage accepted there. The first is informal but accepted by the state: The couple must agree they are married, cohabit within the state, and represent to others they are married. At that point, the state recognizes the marriage as legal.

    A pension board, however, doesn’t have to recognize that marriage. So a couple in Texas can file a declaration of marriage with the county clerk’s office. That’s what this couple decided to do. Nelson said his clients’ affidavit stated they lived together as a married couple and presented themselves as a married couple for the past 23 years. During that time, neither was married to another person.

    Nelson said the clerk is asked to swear that the couple is who they say they are and have presented a form that is properly filled out. The clerk is not asked to interpret the document in any way, he noted.

    Nelson had another problem with the county clerk’s office asking the couple to change the date on the document and perjure themselves. “When a court declares a law unconstitutional, it, in effect, never existed,” Nelson said. Since the "Obergefell v. Hodges" decision that legalized same-sex marriage came into effect, marriages performed before the decision are valid from the time of those marriages.

    Common-law marriage in Texas may be declared at any time and the affidavit filed at any time and the marriage is recognized from the date the couple declared they were together. In addition to pension benefits, common-law marriage may be preferable for couples to file for purposes of proving parental rights and placing names on a birth certificate. Nelson said common-law marriage is useful when the status of two individuals has to be established prior to a court decision. In addition to pensions and probate, he said other cases include those dealing with birth certificates and custody. In the case of birth certificates, a couple may have legally married in Texas this summer or in another state over the past few years. But a couple had to be married at the time of the birth or adoption of their children to automatically be placed on a birth certificate. http://www.dallasvoice.com/tarrant-county-clerk-r

    Up-Date: Tarrant County Clerk Reverses Stance on Same-Sex Couple’s Common-Law Marriage

    Today, 25 September 2015, after being contacted by Fairness Fort Worth President David Mack Henderson, Tarrant County Head Clerk Mary Louise Garcia has issued a statement saying her office will accept affidavits of common-law marriage from same-sex couples.

  • 51. davepCA  |  September 25, 2015 at 9:01 pm

    Excellent!

  • 52. Fortguy  |  September 25, 2015 at 10:36 pm

    A little note about Tarrant Co. geography. Fort Worth is a blue-voting city in a mildly red county. If the couple had chosen to file at the main courthouse in downtown Fort Worth, they probably could have saved themselves considerable time and headache.

    Nevertheless, I'm glad they filed in Arlington in order to get the county clerk, a Republican, on record of upholding the law to all subordinates everywhere. Arlington is a mildly red city trending purple as an "inner ring" suburb where much of the city has an older housing stock and an increasing minority population.

    The couple probably would have received an even more insulting push back had they filed at the sub-courthouse serving the other "mid-cities" in NE Tarrant which is a hotbed of Tea Party and open-carry gun rights groups who don't even believe in restricting gun sales to the insane, have spousal restraining orders, etc. I'm glad this is resolved as the Tarrant clerk was not our friend in the days around Obergefell.

  • 53. JayJonson  |  September 26, 2015 at 6:44 am

    Glad this story has a happy ending. I assume that Attorney General Paxton had nothing to do with either the initial refusal or the reversal on the part of the Tarrant County Head Clerk. It is however worthwhile noting that the Department of Health Services was asked by the Tarrant County Head Clerk for advice, and they gave the right answer. Since a few weeks ago they were also subject to a possible contempt charge for following Paxton rather than the law, the Health Services Department is now probably acutely aware that they must treat same-sex couples in the same way they treat opposite-sex couples.

  • 54. tx64jm  |  September 26, 2015 at 9:53 am

    On another note … Paxton appears to have outgunned the prosecution in his criminal case…

    In addition to Dan Cogdell of houston and Terri moore of fort worth, he added Phil Hilder, Bill Mateja and Heather Barbieri.

    So we have 2 houston defense lawyers as prosecutors and 3 houston defense lawyers ( 2 of whom are securities fraud specialists) fighting in a collin county court room, on opposite sides.
    http://www.statesman.com/news/news/ken-paxton-add

  • 55. SethInMaryland  |  September 25, 2015 at 6:31 pm

    Germany: Bundesrat Approves Same-Sex Marriage Bill:Germany’s 16 states.

    The German federal council (Bundesrat) on Friday approved a bill recognising same-sex marriage by a majority of votes from representatives of the country’s major political parties. The bill, which includes reforms to German civil law, was submitted by the governments of four federal states, which are dominated by the coalition of the Social Democrats, the Greens and the Left, EFE news reported. German Chancellor Angela Merkel has made clear in recent public remarks that marriage, for her, is the union of a man and a woman, but she acknowledged that there is currently a debate between other different views, even within her Christian Democratic Union party. The Social Democratic party is in favour of recognising gay marriage, although its legalisation was never stated before forming the coalition with Merkel.

    The bill now goes to the popularly-elected 630-seat Bundestag, which is dominated by legislators from the Christian Democratic Union (254 seats) and the Social Democrats (193 seats. )http://www.joemygod.com/2015/09/25/germany-bundesrat-approves-same-sex-marriage-bill/

  • 56. Zack12  |  September 26, 2015 at 2:40 pm

    I see South Dakota had to shell out a few bucks for their fight against marriage equality.
    All I can say is that it serves them right that it hit them in the pocketbook.
    Along with Michigan, Nebraska and Virginia, South Dakota's marriage ban was one of the harshest in the nation.
    It not only forbid marriage but also civil unions, domestic partnerships and anything that even remotely resembled marriage.
    There is no way to spin all that as anything but animus towards same sex couples.
    If nothing else, those four state bans showed the we're okay with you having rights if it isn't called marriage line to be a flat out lie, something we always knew.

  • 57. guitaristbl  |  September 27, 2015 at 11:42 am

    And I guess that's the reason it was approved by just a 52 % majority back then in a very red state – the civil union ban. The same reason the amendment failed the first time around in Arizona.

  • 58. Zack12  |  September 27, 2015 at 2:29 pm

    Indeed and why there was an uproar in Indiana with its proposed ban.
    You can't say you support us having rights if they aren't called marriage and then push for stuff like that.

  • 59. VIRick  |  September 26, 2015 at 4:14 pm

    Man who Lives in Town of Gay Couldn’t Get Farming License because It’s ‘Offensive’

    A farmer who lives in the town of Gay, Georgia, has said he was banned from getting a federal cattle license because the automated system rejected the name. Approximately 100 people live in the town of Gay, Georgia, which was named after William F Gay. However, when cattle farmer, Gene King, tried to get a special farming license, he was rejected because of the ‘offensive’ name.

    King told Fox5 Atlanta that he had been trying to obtain a special livestock transport license from the USDA to allow him to transport cattle across state lines. However, the farmer experienced a setback, when the town’s name was rejected as explicit by the USDA’s computer system.

    He queried about the hold-up with the USDA, recounting: “[A worker] said it’s kicking it out, saying that’s an offensive word and won’t accept your application.” The USDA quickly realized that it was being rejected because the “city name contains a banned word” under a redundancy system that prevents the application system from being vandalized.

    However, they couldn’t find a quick fix, other than submitting the town’s name as ‘Bay,’ instead, and putting a note on the file. King was having none of it. He said, "No, I don’t want to submit it as Bay, Georgia. I want to submit it as Gay, Georgia, because that’s where I live. And she said do you want a number or not?"

    I said, "Ma’am, this is ridiculous. My name is Gene King. I live here in Gay, Ga. That’s G-A-Y, not B-A-Y.” However, he was eventually able to get a license. King added that he has gay friends (that is, homosexual friends) outside of Gay, but he has no gay friends in Gay. http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2015/09/26/man-who-live

    OK, so I had to look it up. Gay, Georgia, is a town in Meriwether County, situated on state hwy 85, about 39 miles south of the Atlanta Airport, and 50 miles north of Columbus GA. They even have a website, "What to Do in Gay, Georgia:" http://www.exploregeorgia.org/city/gay
    Gay GA 30218

  • 60. F_Young  |  September 26, 2015 at 6:02 pm

    Profile
    Incorporated Date: January 1, 1907
    Population: 89
    Total Area: 0.9 sq mi

    http://georgia.gov/cities-counties/gay

    If this can be called a town, then gay villages should be called cities.

  • 61. VIRick  |  September 26, 2015 at 6:56 pm

    I love their white water tower, proclaiming in bright, bold, 6-foot high blue letters, "Town of Gay," soon to become one of Georgia's most stellar landmarks! It also might be worth noting that the Gay post office has been in operation since 1886.

    From what little I know of Georgia state law, if a geographical area chooses to incorporate, the lowest denomination of such incorporated zones is referred to as a "town." This designation has no bearing on its population. However, if it were to grow, and exceed a specific population size, it would then become known as a "city." The term, "village," has no legal bearing in Georgia. Six municipalities in Georgia have merged with their surrounding counties to form consolidated city-counties.

  • 62. jpmassar  |  September 26, 2015 at 8:55 pm

    “The latest assault on Christian values comes from a company you’d never guess,” wrote One Million Moms director Monica Cole, who apparently knows nothing about the company. “Not only is Frito-Lay promoting homosexuality among teens, but it is backing the agenda of [Dan Savage,] one of the most anti-Christian bullies in America…Contact Frito-Lay and urge them to drop its promotion of anti-Christian bigotry.”
    http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2015/09/26/

  • 63. RnL2008  |  September 27, 2015 at 8:27 am

    Don't you mean "One Mom"? Lol!!!

    These folks need to get a life and if they are going to boycott things that support Gays and Lesbians….could they please start boycotting oxygen……..this would be a great start!!!

  • 64. VIRick  |  September 27, 2015 at 7:51 pm

    Per Equality Case Files:

    On 25 September 2015, in "Waters v. Ricketts," the Nebraska marriage case, now back in district court for final judgment, the Plaintiffs have filed a supplement to their motion for summary judgment: http://files.eqcf.org/cases/814-cv-00356-83/

    "Since the briefing was completed on the cross-motions for summary judgment, it has come to Plaintiffs’ attention that the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), whose CEO is a Defendant in this case, is refusing to provide married same-sex couples birth certificates for their children on the same terms and conditions as married different-sex couples. Specifically, when a child is born to a married different-sex couple, both spouses are listed as parents on the birth certificate regardless of whether the husband is the biological father of the child. Neb. Rev. Stat. § 71-640.01.

    In contrast, when a child is born to a married same-sex couple, DHHS will only list the spouse who gave birth; it will not include the other spouse."

  • 65. hoodatsayhoodat  |  September 28, 2015 at 9:48 am

    Kim Davis lawyer broadcasts huge fucking lie
    (if this has been posted, I can't find it….is there a way to search this site?)
    http://www.joemygod.com/2015/09/28/liberty-counse

  • 66. davepCA  |  September 28, 2015 at 10:05 am

    HA! That's the same stunt NOM used to try, using unrelated photos to create some lie about massive support that didn't exist. Look where it got THEM.

  • 67. bayareajohn  |  September 28, 2015 at 1:27 pm

    I thought lying was a sin… shouldn't dear Kimmy distance herself from this sort of thing?

  • 68. VIRick  |  September 28, 2015 at 2:11 pm

    Over at Think Progress, our pal Zack Ford recaps the truth about the photo:

    Staver posted the image a second time on Sunday, claiming that Peruvian Congressman Julio Rosas was responsible for organizing it. There is not a single news story about a prayer rally taking place in Peru for Kim Davis. There is not a single post on Rosas’ Twitter or Facebook about such a rally, though he did send one tweet of support for Staver’s defense of Davis. And the image is almost certainly from a prayer rally known as “Jesús Te Ama Y Te Cambia” (“Jesus Loves You And Changes You), which did take place in Peru — over five days in May, 2014. Internet sleuths, including Twitter user @DCHomos, quickly identified the stadium as the Estadio Universidad Nacional Mayor San Marcos at the National University of San Marcos. Then, a number of videos seemed to quickly confirm that the image shared by Staver and Barber was from the 2014 convention organized by the Pentecostal Movimiento Misionero Mundial (Worldwide Missionary Movement).

    As Zack and DCHomos point out, many videos on YouTube clearly show that the 2014 stadium event had the exact same layout, the same green media tent, the same banners, the same porta-potties, etc. Even the cloudy skies match the photo posted by the Liars For Jesus® at Liberty Counsel. http://www.joemygod.com/2015/09/28/liberty-counse

  • 69. StraightDave  |  September 28, 2015 at 12:05 pm

    @hoodat
    Google lets you focus your search on any site as follows:

    site: http://www.equalityontrial.com [search string]

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