Jun 262015
 

Yesterday, the Supreme Court upheld Obamacare. Today, they have ruled that same-sex marriage is a Constitutional right in all fifty states. No state, from this moment forward, is allowed to ban same-sex marriage. I honestly thought this would never happen in my lifetime. I was wrong, and I am amazed and delighted.

Republican heads are today exploding all across this great land, especially here in Texas.

The ruling of the Court may be read here. Basically:

The Fourteenth Amendment requires a State to license a marriage between two people of the same sex and to recognize a marriage between two people of the same sex when their marriage was lawfully licensed and performed out-of-State.

The vote was, as expected, 5-4, with the four conservative members of the Court voting against equal marriage rights for gays and lesbians.

The ruling takes effect immediately.

A transcript of President Barack Obama’s remarks following the ruling may be read after the break.

Continue reading »

May 142014
 

I was born and raised in Idaho, though I got out as quickly as I could (at age 19… a long, long time ago). I never thought I would see this in my lifetime:

U.S. judge overturns Idaho ban on gay marriage

(Reuters) – A U.S. federal judge struck down Idaho’s ban on gay marriage on Tuesday, saying it relegated same-sex couples to a second-class status in violation of constitutional guarantees of equal protection under the law.

The ruling by U.S. Magistrate Judge Candy Dale was the latest in a string of decisions by federal judges against state bans on same-sex matrimony that, if upheld by higher courts, would sharply broaden access to marriage for U.S. gay couples.

Dale said her decision would go into effect on Friday at 9 a.m. local time, unless put on hold by a higher court.

Marriage rights have been extended to gay couples in 17 states and the District of Columbia in a trend that has gained momentum since the U.S. Supreme Court ruled last June that legally married same-sex couples nationwide are eligible for federal benefits.

That decision, which struck down part of the 1996 federal Defense of Marriage Act, has been cited by a number of federal judges, including Dale, in subsequent opinions overturning state bans on gay matrimony.

So, barring a stay on Judge Dale’s decision by a higher court, which has been requested by Idaho Governor Butch Otter (yes, that really is his name), gays and lesbians will be able to get married in that state starting at 9:00 a.m. this Friday.

Amazing and wonderful things are happening in this country. If we’re not careful, we won’t be a third world country for much longer.

UPDATE:

Judge refuses to stay Idaho same-sex marriages

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — A federal magistrate judge on Wednesday rejected a request from Idaho’s governor to put same-sex weddings on hold while he appeals her ruling from a day earlier that struck down the state’s same-sex marriage ban.

U.S. District Magistrate Judge Candy Dale wrote that the appeal is unlikely to succeed so there’s no reason to keep the state from granting marriage licenses to gay couples starting Friday.

Dale noted she already found Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter’s arguments lacked legal merit when she struck down the ban Tuesday evening. The judge said allowing Idaho to continue enforcing its laws against same-sex marriage would irreparably harm the four couples who sued over the ban, along with other gay couples.

“Nor does the public interest favor preserving a status quo that deprives individuals of their constitutional rights,” Dale wrote. “The court finds a stay pending appeal is not warranted.”

UPDATE #2:

9th Circuit Court temporarily halts Idaho same-sex marriages

BOISE — The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has granted Idaho Gov. Butch Otter’s request for a temporary stay while it considers the state’s request for a longer stay pending appeal of the lower court’s ruling overturning Idaho same-sex marriage ban.

“The district court’s May 13, 2014 order is temporarily stayed pending this court’s disposition of appellants’ emergency motions for a stay pending appeal,” declared the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in an order released shortly after 1 p.m. Thursday.

The temporary stay will remain in effect until the 9th Circuit Court decides whether to issue a full stay pending appeal.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Candy W. Dale on Tuesday struck down Idaho’s 2006 constitutional amendment prohibiting same-sex marriages. Her order was to take effect 9 a.m. Friday.

So, at least for the time being, Idaho remains in the dark ages.

Feb 132014
 

To be expected:

Democrat Davis says she supports gay marriage

SAN ANTONIO — Democratic gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis says she supports gay marriage and called on her opponent Attorney General Greg Abbott to stop defending the definition of marriage in the Texas constitution as only between one man and one woman.

The state senator from Fort Worth told the San Antonio Express-News editorial board on Thursday that two people who want to get married should be allowed to do so regardless of their sexual orientation.

A federal judge in San Antonio heard arguments Wednesday that the voter-approved ban on gay marriage is unconstitutional.

You could just as easily write the headline for the story to read “Democrat Wendy Davis supports the United States Constitution.”

A federal judge in Virginia ruled today that the gay marriage ban in that state is unconstitutional.

Federal Judge Rules Va. Gay Marriage Ban Unconstitutional

A federal judge ruled late Thursday evening Virginia’s gay marriage ban is unconstitutional.

U.S. District Judge Arenda L. Wright Allen’s decision makes Virginia the second state in the South to have a ban on gay marriages overturned. It comes the day after a similar ruling in Kentucky and following similar rulings in federal courts in Utah and Oklahoma…

Thursday, Wright ruled the ban violated the due process and equal protection clauses of the 14th Amendment.

Finally, judges are beginning to confirm what I have been saying all along… laws denying gays and lesbians equal rights to marriage violate the due process and equal protection guaranteed in the 14th Amendment. Took ’em long enough.

His two moms

 Posted by at 09:48  Politics
May 242013
 

I just happened upon this video (here) and want to share it with you. It’s video of 18-year-old Riley Roberts talking to a Nevada State Senate committee about his two moms. The committee was debating a resolution favoring marriage equality.

The resolution went on to pass the State Assembly by a vote of 27-14. It had earlier passed in the Senate on a 12-9 vote. All no votes were from Republicans.

Nevada Legislature advances gay marriage resolution

A constitutional amendment that would let voters decide whether to legalize gay marriage passed the final hurdle of the 2013 legislative session Thursday but still has a long way to go.

Senate Joint Resolution 13 passed the Assembly on a 27-14 vote, bringing the process to get it to the ballot in 2016 to an end for this year. All the no votes were Republicans. Assemblywoman Michele Fiore, R-Las Vegas, voted with Democrats.

The proposed amendment must pass again in identical form in the 2015 legislative session before it can go to the ballot. Gov. Brian Sandoval’s signature is not required.

The proposal would remove Nevada’s current prohibition on same-gender marriage from the state constitution, and add new language recognizing same-gender marriage…

The measure earlier passed the Senate on a 12-9 vote will all Democrats and one Republican in support.

A child will teach them

 Posted by at 11:26  Politics
Mar 232013
 

Watch and listen as Matthew Lannon, 12, a sixth-grader at Wheeler School in Providence testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee Thursday evening at the Rhode Island State House about marriage equality…

If there’s one thing you don’t mess with in life, it’s love. My parents and all the other gay and lesbian people here want to be happy, just like you. All they want is to be treated fairly. But unlike most of you, they have to come again here year after year and explain over and over why their love is equal to yours. This year, you have the opportunity to change that. I say, choose love.

The United States is changing, and it’s the youngsters who will change it. I only wish my generation could have seen the light.
 

DOMA must go

 Posted by at 10:38  Politics
Mar 082013
 

From the president who signed DOMA into law:

It’s time to overturn DOMA

In 1996, I signed the Defense of Marriage Act. Although that was only 17 years ago, it was a very different time. In no state in the union was same-sex marriage recognized, much less available as a legal right, but some were moving in that direction. Washington, as a result, was swirling with all manner of possible responses, some quite draconian. As a bipartisan group of former senators stated in their March 1 amicus brief to the Supreme Court, many supporters of the bill known as DOMA believed that its passage “would defuse a movement to enact a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage, which would have ended the debate for a generation or more.” It was under these circumstances that DOMA came to my desk, opposed by only 81 of the 535 members of Congress.

On March 27, DOMA will come before the Supreme Court, and the justices must decide whether it is consistent with the principles of a nation that honors freedom, equality and justice above all, and is therefore constitutional. As the president who signed the act into law, I have come to believe that DOMA is contrary to those principles and, in fact, incompatible with our Constitution.

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