Speed Read: Monday 18 November 2013

1-    MARKING TEN YEARS: Today is the 10th anniversary of the pivotal ruling in Massachusetts that said the state constitution required same-sex couples have the same access to civil marriage as male-female couples. Ninety-nine court decisions and more than 300 briefs in other cases have cited that watershed decision. But as momentous as the Goodridge decision was for the LGBT community, it looked for a while that it might trigger an equally harsh reaction. Before the first year had passed, 13 states had amended their constitutions to ward off similar legal challenges. Read full story this page.

2-   INDIANA POLL REBUFFS BAN: A recent poll in Indiana has found that 58 percent of adults surveyed oppose the idea of amending the state constitution to ban same-sex marriage. The WISH/Ball State University poll’s finding is up four points from a year ago when 54 percent opposed the idea. The state legislature is considering a proposal to amend the state constitution to ban marriage licenses for same-sex couples.

3-   MISSOURI SHOWS MOVEMENT: Democratic Governor Jay Nixon signed an executive order November 14 ordering the Missouri department of revenue to “require all taxpayers who properly file a joint federal income tax return to file a combined state income tax return.” While Missouri bans the issuance of marriage licenses to same-sex couples and does not recognize licenses obtained by same-sex couples in other states, state law, noted Nixon, still requires that married couples who file a joint federal return also file a joint state return. Nixon also told local papers that he has personally come to support allowing same-sex couples to marry.

4-   TEXAS SCHOOL COMES AROUND: A south Texas high school that refused to include the photo of a transgender student because they thought his wearing of a tuxedo offended community standards announced Friday that it would include the photo. Jeydon Loredo was born female but now identifies as a male and had his yearbook photo taken wearing a tuxedo. The Southern Poverty Law Center announced that the school also agreed to follow its own corrective policies for cases of gender discrimination and will also expressly include gender expression in its ant-discrimination policies.

5-   SINEMA AND MALONEY VOTE FOR GUT BILL: Openly gay U.S. Rep. Sean Maloney (D-NY) and openly bisexual Rep. Kyrsten Sinema voted for a bill last Friday to allow consumers to purchase and keep health coverage that fails to qualify as adequate under the Affordable Care Act. The other five openly LGBT members of the House voted no. President Obama has made clear he will veto it.

6-   CHENEY SQUABBLE: U.S. Senate candidate Liz Cheney told Fox News Sunday that she “disagrees” with her sister Mary having the right to marry her longtime partner Heather Poe. And that drew a Facebook retort from Poe and a concurring opinion from Mary Cheney. According to the Washington Post, Mary posted a message saying, “Liz, this isn’t just an issue on which we disagree—you’re just wrong….” Liz Cheney is in a tough battle for a U.S. Senate seat from Wyoming next November.

7-   CHICAGO NOMINEE CONFIRMED: The U.S. Senate on November 14 confirmed Chicago gay Democratic activist James “Wally” Brewster to become ambassador to the Dominican Republic. Brewster is Senior Managing Partner for SB&K Global, a Chicago-based brand strategy consulting. He also serves as a National LGBT Co-Chair for the Democratic National Committee and is a member of the Human Rights Campaign Fund board. Brewster reportedly raised more than $1 million for President Obama’s re-election campaign.

Leave a Reply