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November 13, 2014

State's governor and attorney general vow to continue legal fight to uphold ban

Same-sex couples began getting married in the state of Kansas on Thursday (13 November).

The marriages began after the US Supreme Court lifted the emergency stay it had issued earlier in the week.

Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt, who along with Governor Sam Brownback has vowed to continue the legal fight against gay marriage, had maintained that marriages should only be allowed in the two counties where successful lawsuits were filed.

But marriages were taking place across the state throughout the day.

November 6, 2014

Openly gay Mike Michaud has conceded defeat in his effort to be elected governor of the state of Maine

Democratic candidate Mike Michaud has lost his bid to become the first openly gay state governor in the United States of America, losing to Republican incumbent Paul LePage.

Michaud had been tipped to be a winner as LePage appeared to be among the more politically vulnerable state governors but the voters of Maine decided otherwise.

At last count Michaud had received 44% of the vote compared to LePage’s 47% while an independent candidate, Eliot Cutler, received 8% of votes.

November 5, 2014

‘I am widower. My husband loved Halloween but unfortunately he passed away last May and never got to enjoy the babies first Halloween, so in his memory I'm trying to enjoy as much as we can.’

Jorge Goytizolo and his partner Philip Parrish always loved dressing up at Halloween.

The two met in 1998 and got married in New York in 2013.

They became parents to twins Santiago and Ella in February of this year, through the use of a surrogate mom in Guatemala.

Overjoyed with their children, the Fort Lauderdale couple looked forward to enjoying their first Halloween as a family.

November 1, 2014

'State officials don't get to pick and choose what laws they need to follow,' says ACLU of North Carolina legal director Chris Brook

At least six magistrates in North Carolina have resigned rather than be forced to officiate same-sex weddings after a federal court decision legalized same-sex unions in the state on October 10, the Charlotte Observer reported this week.

When the federal decision was handed down, North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory said all state agencies would comply. State Senator Phil Berger however asked to the courts to grant protections to public officials who refuse to perform same-sex ceremonies for religious reasons. It was denied.

October 23, 2014

Brian Sandoval is against effort to have recent striking down of ban heard by entire 9th Circuit Court of Appeals

Brian Sandoval may personally believe marriage should be between a man and a woman but Nevada's Republican governor has still vowed to fight efforts to halt same-sex marriage in his state.

Sandoval on Wednesday (22 October) officially stated opposition to efforts by the Coalition for the Protection of Marriage to reverse marriage equality.

The group is petitioning to get the entire 9th Circuit Court of Appeals to rule on a case recently which led to the state's ban on same-sex marriage being overturned as well as the ban in Idaho.

October 22, 2014

Butch Otter, up for reelection, wants entire 9th Circuit Court to re-hear case

Same-sex marriages have begun in Idaho but the state's governor is still hoping that will be a temporary thing.

Butch Otter, who is up for reelection, announced Tuesday (21 October) that he plans to ask the full 11-member 9th Circuit Court to re-hear the case which successfully challenged the state's gay marriage ban.

It was a three-judge panel from the Circuit Court who overturned the ban.

Otter maintains that errors when it struck down the ban on 7 October.

October 19, 2014

'The state of Kansas has voted on this, the people of Kansas have voted on this'


Read more here: http://www.kansas.com/news/politics-government/article3000547.html#storylink=cp

Despite legal losses, the governor of Kansas continues to back the state's gay marriage ban.

Yesterday, 18 October, Sam Brownback joined a rally sponsored by the anti-gay Family Research Council.

Held in the parking lot of Summit Church in East Wichita, Brownback told the approximately 100 attendees  '70 percent of Kansans' approved the prohibition in 2005.

October 17, 2014

'It is not the role of the judiciary to determine that same-sex marriages should be allowed'

Same-sex marriages began taking place in Arizona on Friday (17 October) but one person not celebrating is the state's Republican governor Jan Brewer.

Brewer issued a blistering statement slamming a ruling by US District Court Judge John Sedwick who found that last week's decision by The Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit striking down marriage bans in Nevada and Idaho also applies to Arizona.

October 15, 2014

State's governor and attorney general accused of 'playing politics with our families'

The state of South Carolina was sued Wednesday (15 October) by two LGBTI groups for continuing to block same-sex marriages from taking place there.

Lambda Legal and South Carolina Equality claim that last week's decision by the US Supreme Court’s to let stand a 4th Circuit ruling striking down Virginia’s same-sex marriage ban also applies to South Carolina because it is in the same jurisdiction.

They want the marriages to begin immediately.

October 13, 2014

Governor Sean Parnell: 'I have a duty to defend and uphold the law and the Alaska Constitution'

Same-sex couples began getting married in Alaska today but one person not celebrating is the state's Republican governor who is up for reelection next month.

Governor Sean Parnell is vowing to fight a ruling issued Sunday (12 October) by a federal judge which struck down the state's 1998 ban on gay marriage.

October 13, 2014

Pat McCrory says it is his job to enforce ruling of US Supreme Court

North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory knows the battle over same-ex marriage in his state is over and said over the weekend that it is time for everyone to move forward.

'I think it's a time for healing on all sides,' the governor said during an appearance at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

October 13, 2014

In a brief filed with the Firth Circuit Court of Appeals, Greg Abbott also said that – in relation to legal arguments – the fact such unions may benefit children with same-sex parents ‘doesn’t matter’

At the beginning of the month, Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott said that part of the reason he was opposed to gay marriage was because he’d been married to his wife for 33 years.

Now, Abbott – a Republican who is currently running for the position of Governor of Texas – has voiced another reason why the Lone Star State should maintain its ban on gay marriage: Maintaining such a ban reduces out-of-wedlock births.

October 13, 2014

Unions took place in June during a brief legal window

More than 500 same-sex couples who got married in Wisconsin last June are no longer in legal limbo.

Governor Scott Walker issued a statement Monday (13 October) announcing that it would recognize that marriages of the couples who were married in the state during the week between a district court’s decision to overturn the state's gay marriage ban and a judge's subsequent stay of that ruling.

The announcement comes a week after the US Supreme Court let stand the striking down of gay marriage bans in five states, including Wisconsin.

October 11, 2014

Governor Terry McAuliffe – who yesterday officiated at a gay wedding – says decision will ‘open more doors for Virginia children who need loving families’

On Monday the US Supreme Court announced that it was not going to consider appeals from lawmakers in several states who wished to uphold same-sex marriage bans.

One of the States affected by this decision was Virginia.

On the day following the Supreme Court’s decision, Virginia governor Terry McAuliffe issued an executive order directing state agencies to comply with the decision, paving the way for same-sex marriages to commence.

October 10, 2014

Former Arkansas governor accuses party leadership of abdicating on the issue

In a week that saw marriage equality enjoy unprecedented gains in the US, former Arkansas Governor Mark Huckabee is accusing the Republican Party's leadership of throwing in the towel on the issue.

Huckabee, an unsuccessful candidate for the party's presidential nomination in 2008, is so livid that he is threatening to become an Independent.

'I'm utterly exasperated with Republicans and the so-called leadership of the Republicans who have abdicated on this issue,' Huckabee said on American Family Radio's Today's Issues show.

October 10, 2014

'Idaho is pro traditional marriage. And I am not going to do anything to put that in danger'

Idaho's Governor Butch Otter, who is up for reelection, has pledged to continue to defend his state's ban on gay marriage.

The ban, passed eight years ago, was declared unconstitutional by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals this week but that ruling is being appealed by the state.

Same-sex marriages could have begun as early as Wednesday this week but Otter's office filed for a stay pending their appeal.

October 9, 2014

Governor Earl Ray Tomblin urges residents to 'uphold our statewide tradition of treating one another with dignity and respect'

Same-sex marriage is coming to the state of West Virginia sooner than anyone expected.

The state's governor and attorney general announced today that they will not longer defend challenges to the state's ban on gay marriage due to the Supreme Court's recent decision not to review the ruling overturning the ban in neighboring Virginia.

Same-sex couples are expected to be able to begin applying for marriage licenses by next Tuesday (14 October) at the latest, according to the state Department of Health and Human Resources.

October 5, 2014

If elected, Michaud will become the first openly gay governor in US history

First lady Michelle Obama has given her backing to openly gay Maine governor candidate Mike Michaud.

Speaking to an audience at the University of Maine to encourage women and young people to vote on Friday (3 October), Obama said: ‘[If] we bring others along with us then I know we can keep on making that change we can believe in then we can elect Mike Michaud as governor of Maine and I know that together we can build a future worthy of all our children.

October 1, 2014

Attorney General Greg Abbott gives answer during debate with Democrat candidate Wendy Davis

Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott, running for governor of the Lone Star state, said during a debate Tuesday (30 September) that he is against same-sex marriage because he's been married to a woman for 33 years.

According to LoneStarQ.com, the gay marriage question was posed to Abbott via Twitter from a man named John from Fort Worth: 'If a 10-year-old girl asked you whether her two dads should be allowed to get married, what would you tell her?'

September 30, 2014

Christians rally in Coahuila a month after the state legalized gay marriage

An estimated 30,000 people marched on Sunday in Coahuila to protest the Mexican state's new gay marriage law.

The march was organized by the Christ Lives group in the state capital Saltillo, a week after the first gay couples were married in the northern state.

Pastor Carlos Pacheco, director of the evangelical Christian group, led the march carrying a large Bible while activists distributed pamphlets on gay 'cures.'

September 30, 2014

Respect After Death Act ensures that authentic gender identity is reflected on death certificates

California Governor Jerry Brown has signed a bill into law that will make sure death certificates for transgender people accurately reflect their authentic, lived identity.

The Respect After Death Act requires that the authority responsible for completing the transgender person's death certificate adhere to documentation of their gender identity such as an updated birth certificate or driver's license.

September 29, 2014

Defendents can no longer claim their violent act was triggered by victim’s sexual orientation or gender identity

California has become the first state in the US to ban the so-called 'panic defense' that has been used successfully by some defendants in court.

Governor Jerry Brown signed into law a bill which eliminates the excuse that a person was 'panicked' into committing a killing or assaulting a gay or trans person during a sudden quarrel or in the heat of passion.

Some defendants have succeeded in having homicide or manslaughter charges reduced by saying their violent act was triggered by victim’s sexual orientation or gender identity.

September 26, 2014

Man arrested for gay sex faces three months to two years in prison

A man is in hiding after he escaped police who wanted to arrest him on gay sex charges.

The arrestee, whose name has not been released, is a Burundi man who was found with his Vietnamese telecommunications worker partner.

Richard Nzokirantevye, the governor of Karuzi Province, told AFP the Vietnamese man is being held by police.

The Burundian partner escaped and is being sought by the authorities, the governor said.

September 23, 2014

If found guilty he will be the first person convicted of the crime in the country

A Vietnamese man was arrested last week in Karuzi in northern Burundi for gay sex.

If found guilty he will be the first person convicted of the crime in the African country.

Burundi adopted a new penal code in 2009 that punishes 'sexual relations with a person of the same sex' with three months to two years in jail and a fine of 50,000 ($32) to 100,000 Burundian francs ($65).