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April 10, 2014

'Nobody in this state or this nation should have to feel bad about themselves for being who they are'

Today (9 April) Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton signed an anti-bullying law that specifically includes LGBT students.

The Safe and Supportive Minnesota Schools Act requires school districts to train staff on how to recognize and prevent bullying.

Prevention programs are to be implemented, and districts must focus more on changing behavior as opposed to punishment.

April 9, 2014

Former Arkansas Governor says he's not a 'hater' but simply 'on the right side of the Bible”

Former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee insists he is not a homophobe, he's just a Christian.

During a keynote address to the Iowa Faith and Freedom Coalition this week, Huckabee reiterated that he believes marriage should be between one man and one woman because he is 'on the right side of the Bible.'

'I'm not against anybody, I'm really not,' he insisted. 'I'm not a hater. I'm not homophobic.'

April 4, 2014

Tony Perkins, president of the anti-gay Family Research Council, attended the small signing ceremony for the legislation

Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant held a small ceremony for the signing of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, a bill LGBTI advocates see as a step toward state approved anti-gay discrimination.

April 3, 2014

The legislation also includes a measure that adds  the national motto 'In God We Trust' in Mississippi's state seal

Governor Phil Bryant announced he will sign Mississippi's  Religious Freedom Restoration Act, a proposal many argue allows public businesses to deny services to LGBTI customers.

March 31, 2014

The Missouri Family Policy Council is hoping that a court will stop same-sex married couples from filing joint state tax returns in what may be a new front in the far right’s war against gay marriage

Missouri’s Family Policy Council, an affiliate of far right anti-gay groups Focus on the Family and the Family Research Council, is suing to stop same-sex married couples from filing joint tax returns as they say it violates the state’s ban on same-sex marriage.

The group has asked for District Court judge Jon Beetem to order an immediate halt on same-sex couples being allowed to file joint state tax returns as they claim it will result in ‘immediate and irreparable damage’ to their cause.

March 28, 2014

Attorney General Eric Holder says couples will not be asked to wait for further resolution in the courts before seeking federal benefits

US Attorney General Eric Holder said today that the marriages of the more than 300 same-sex couples wed last weekend in Michigan will be recognized by the federal government.

Holder's announcement comes days after Michigan Governor Rick Snyder said the state would not recognize the marriages while there was a legal stay on last week's ruling by a federal judge which overturned the state's gay marriage ban.

March 27, 2014

Republicans, including one who said 'What this bill does is change nature,' fail in attempts to gut the legislation of protections

Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley is poised to sign into law a bill that makes it illegal to discriminate against transgender people in employment, housing, credit and public accommodations.

The state's House of Delegates passed a bill by a vote of 82-57 on Thursday (27 March). the state Senate had passed the legislation earlier this month by a vote of 32-15.

SB 212 expands to all of Maryland's 23 counties protections that already exist for transgender people in the counties of Howard, Montgomery, Baltimore and the city of Baltimore.

March 26, 2014

Rick Snyder believes unions are 'legal and valid' but points to an appeals court stay of judge's ruling that struck down marriage ban

Governor Rick Snyder has announced that the marriages of same-sex couples wed in Michigan last weekend will not be recognized by the state - for now.

Hundreds of couples rushed to get married after a federal judge struck down the state's gay marriage ban on Friday (21 March). An appeals court on Saturday (22 March) granted the state's request for a stay of the ruling and put a halt to the marriages.

March 19, 2014

'We intend to take all necessary steps to defend the law'

Governor Bill Haslam is appealing a federal judge's 14 March ruling that Tennessee must recognize the marriages of three same-sex couples while their lawsuit against the state's gay marriage ban is pending.

March 13, 2014

Although governor is limited to two terms, Brewer had thought she might try and find a way to run again

Arizona Governor Jan Brewer announced Wednesday (12 March) that she will not be trying to run for a third term.

'There does come a time to pass the torch of leadership,' Brewer said during an appearance at an elementary school in Glendale, Arizona. 'And after competing this term in office, I will be doing just that.'

The Arizona state constitution prohibits a governor from being elected to more than two terms.

March 10, 2014

'In another time, that might have been it. Phil (Robertson) would have stayed fired. But not now, not this time'

Sarah Palin surfaced at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) over the weekend and used part of her speech to defend anti-gay Duck Dynasty patriarch Phil Robertson.

Robertson had been suspended from the A&E reality show after comparing homosexuality to bestiality in an interview with GQ Magazine but the suspension was lifted in less than two weeks.

'In another time, that might have been it,' Palin said to the ultra-conservative audience in National Harbor, Maryland. 'Phil would have stayed fired. But not now, not this time.'

March 5, 2014

Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper has announced his support for same-sex marriage a year after signing civil unions for same-sex couples into law

Democratic Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper has announced that he wants his state to join the growing list of US states that allow same-sex couples to legally marry – releasing a statement in support of the campaign for equal marriage in his state.

‘We have advocated for equal rights for all Coloradans and we will continue to advocate for equal rights for all Coloradans,’ Hickenlooper said in his statement for advocacy group Why Marriage Matters Colorado.

March 5, 2014

Governor Pat Quinn: 'Nobody should have to wait for equal rights when it comes to love'

Same-sex couples can now get married throughout Illinois - three months earlier than the state's ban on gay marriage was due to end.

'Nobody should have to wait for equal rights when it comes to love,' Governor Pat Quinn said in a statement.

Quinn's statement followed Attorney General Lisa Madigan's suggestion in a letter this week that county clerks across the state allow same-sex couples to wed.

Illinois' Religious Freedom and Marriage Fairness Act was not due to go into effect until 1 June.

March 5, 2014

Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway has refused to defend his state’s ban on same-sex marriage that a court struck down so Governor Steve Beshear is going to hire lawyers of his own to appeal it

Two of Kentucky’s leading Democrats have split over the issue of same-sex marriage, with the state’s Attorney General Jack Conway saying he cannot defend discrimination.

‘I would be defending discrimination,’ Conway said at a press conference Tuesday, ‘That I will not do.’

‘From a constitutional perspective, Judge Heyburn got it right, and in light of other recent federal decisions, these laws will not likely survive upon appeal. We cannot waste the resources of the Office of the Attorney General pursuing a case we are unlikely to win.

March 3, 2014

Conservative critical of gays who are 'going to use the hammer of government' to force businesses to serve them who do not want to

Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist George Will, best known for his conservative commentary on politics, is accusing gays of being 'sore winners.'

In an appearance over the weekend (2 March) on FOX News Sunday, Will was chatting with panelists about Arizona Governor Jan Brewer's veto of an anti-gay bill in her state that had been passed by both houses of the legislature.

The bill would have made it legal for any business to refuse to serve anyone - including LGBTI people - if they claimed it was for religious purposes.

March 2, 2014

'If you get to the facts of this, the law was the subject of a tsunami of poorly informed indignation'

The editor of a conservative political magazine is defending Arizona's controversial 'turn away the gays' bill.

The National Review's Rich Lowry was one of the guests  on today's (2 March) ABC News program This Week.

He argued the debate about SB 1062 was littered with half-truths and the legislation was not anti-gay.

February 28, 2014

Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear and state Attorney General Jack Conway have asked a federal judge to delay an order requiring the state to recognize same-sex marriages performed outside of Kentucky while they consider whether to appeal the verdict

Kentucky’s Democrat Governor Steve Beshear is seeking a 90 day delay to a court order forcing the state to legally recognize same-sex marriages performed in jurisdictions where they are legal so that he can consider whether to launch an appeal.

February 27, 2014

Says SB 1062 'has the potential to create more problems that it purports to solve ... It could divide Arizona in ways we cannot even imagine'

Arizona Governor Jan Brewer ended days of suspense by announcing she has vetoed the state's controversial 'turn away the gays' law.

Brewer said at an evening press conference Wednesday (26 February) that the proposed legislation 'has the potential to create more problems that it purports to solve.'

The controversial SB 1062 was passed last week by the Republican controlled state Senate a day after it passed in the House chambers.

February 27, 2014

Unofficial US presidential hopeful tells Florida college students that 'inclusive leadership is really what the 21st century is all about'

Hillary Clinton is praising Arizona's Republican governor for vetoing the wildly controversial SB 1062.

The bill would have made it legal for businesses to discriminate against gay people for religious reasons.

February 26, 2014

Al Melvin can't think of a single example of when SB 1062 has been needed

CNN's Anderson Cooper had asked a simple question of Arizona State Senator Al Melvin.

Could the Republican lawmaker, who is running for governor of his state, think of a single example where the controversial SB 1062 bill has been needed in  Arizona?

The bill, if signed into law by Governor Jan Brewer, would make it legal for businesses to discriminate against anyone - including LGBTI people - if they say it is for religious reasons.

Melvin, who voted in favor of the anti-gay discrimination bill last week, came up empty.

February 26, 2014

'Texans spoke loud and clear by overwhelmingly voting to define marriage as a union between a man and a woman in our Constitution'

Texas Governor Rick Perry believes that a federal judge who struck the state's gay marriage ban today is going against the will of the people.

The Republican, who has a history 0f anti-gay positions and statements, said the voters of his state made their views on same-sex marriage clear in 2005 when they approved a constitutional ban by a 76% margin.

February 25, 2014

'She’s being bullied by the homosexual lobby in Arizona and elsewhere'

Conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh complained on his show today that Arizona's Republican Governor Jan Brewer is being 'bullied' into vetoing a controversial anti-gay bill.

The bill, passed by both houses of the legislature last week, would allow businesses to discriminate against anyone - including LGBTI people - if they say it for religious purposes.

February 24, 2014

US Senator John McCain, business leaders, and even state senators who voted for it are among those now against legislation

As Arizona Governor Jan Brewer continues to offer no clues about whether or not she plans to sign a controversial anti-gay discrimination bill into law, other leaders in the state are stepping up urging her to veto it.

'I hope Governor Brewer will veto #SB1062,' Arizona Senator John McCain tweeted this morning.

The state's other US Senator, Jeff Flake, had tweeted similar sentiments over the weekend.

February 24, 2014

US Senator John McCain, business leaders, and even state senators who voted for it are among those now against legislation

As Arizona Governor Jan Brewer continues to offer no clues about whether or not she plans to sign a controversial anti-gay discrimination bill into law, other leaders in the state are stepping up urging her to veto it.

'I hope Governor Brewer will veto #SB1062,' Arizona Senator John McCain tweeted this morning.

The state's other US Senator, Jeff Flake, had tweeted similar sentiments over the weekend.