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New Nevada Marriage Equality Group

Friday, June 27th, 2014

Freedom NevadaThere’s a new Nevada marriage equality group, and they are pushing for same sex marriage in the state within two years.

The Las Vegas Review Journal reports:

Freedom Nevada, a nonprofit coalition, this month formed a statewide 20-member advisory committee that includes lawmakers, attorneys, religious organizations and equal opportunity organizations, among others. “People have a fundamental right to form families,” said Bishop Dan T. Edwards with the Episcopal Diocese of Nevada, which has taken “heat” for its position of this issue. “This is a matter of civil rights when it comes to state law.”

They plan a 2016 referendum on marriage equality. Will the US Supreme Court beat them to the punch?

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Nevada.

Ohio Marriage Equality Ballot Initiative Cancelled for 2014

Friday, June 20th, 2014

OhioLooks like Ohio marriage equality won’t make the ballot this November.

LGBTQ Nation reports:

A key organizer in the ballot effort to overturn Ohio’s same-sex marriage ban says a revised proposal lacks the required signatures to go before voters this fall. FreedomOhio’s executive director Ian James also said Thursday the campaign would not have had enough money to run an effective statewide campaign this year… With a July 2 signature deadline approaching, James confirmed the issue won’t meet the requirements to appear on 2014 ballots.

So now it’s all up to the courts.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Ohio.

Oregon Marriage Equality Ballot Initiative Still in Play?

Monday, June 2nd, 2014

Oregon Marriage EqualityConcerned that the US Supreme Court could honor NOM’s request and intervene in the Oregon marriage equality case, Oregon United for Marriage might still go ahead with the ballot initiative for November.

Oregon Live reports:

Oregon United For Marriage, the group formed to put a same-sex marriage initiative on the November ballot, had planned to formally decide Monday whether to drop the measure in light of the May 19 federal court ruling allowing gays and lesbians to marry in Oregon. But that’s been put on hold while the group watches to see how the U.S. Supreme Court handles a request by the National Organization for Marriage for an emergency stay of the ruling by U.S. District Judge Michael McShane… Peter Zuckerman, a spokesman for Oregon United for Marriage, said his group remains confident that the court will reject the request from NOM, which was filed last Tuesday. But, he added, leaders of his group “are not going to make a decision [on the initiative] until they know what the court is going to do.” “We have the signatures” to qualify for the ballot, Zuckerman added, “and we’ll turn them in if that’s what we need to do to win.”

Kennedy has asked for briefs by today. No word yet on when he will decide the issue.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Oregon.

USA, Ohio: AG Mike DeWine Approves Language for Ballot Repeal of Marriage Equality Ban

Tuesday, April 15th, 2014

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWineIn our second big story out of Ohio for the day, the state’s Attorney General has approved the language for a ballot initiative to repeal the state’s ban on marriage equality. reports:

The language for a proposed ballot initiative aimed at overturning Ohio’s constitutional ban on same-sex marriage has been approved by the state’s Attorney General Mike DeWine. The AP reports: The amendment language approved by DeWine Monday would also keep clergy from being forced to perform a same-sex marriage. The language goes next to the state ballot board for review. The group FreedomOhio is seeking to repeal and replace Ohio’s 2004 prohibition on gay marriage.

The measure could reach the ballot as early as this November.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Ohio.

USA, Ohio: Ballot Initiative Put on Hold; Gubernatorial Candidate Supports Ruling

Sunday, April 6th, 2014

A couple new stories coming out of Ohio on marriage equality. First off, FreedomOhio is putting its referendum on overturning the state’s ban on hold pending the upcoming ruling.

On Top Magazine reports:

FreedomOhio, the group working on a ballot initiative to repeal Ohio’s ban on gay marriage, announced Friday that it is placing its initiative on hold. FreedomOhio will “hold its original petition for marriage equality in a state of readiness for filing, while collecting signatures on a new petition with revised language,” the group said in a statement. Explaining that it wanted to “ensure that the right language is placed on the ballot at the right time,” the group said it will “continue to work with in-state LGBT groups and allies.”

The group subsequently announced plans to work on an initiative for the Equal Housing and Employment Act.

LGBTQ Nation reports:

Ian James, executive director of FreedomOhio, says the organization plans to begin circulating a petition for the Equal Housing and Employment Act. The initiated statute effort takes time and multiple steps, starting with the group needing to collect roughly 116,000 valid signatures to get the idea before state lawmakers. The General Assembly then would have four months to act on the proposed law. Depending on that outcome, another petition could be circulated to get the proposal before voters.

Ohio Gubernatorial Candidate Ed FitzgeraldFinally, Ohio gubernatorial hopeful Ed Fitzgerald (D, Cuyahoga County) announced his support for the pending ruling.

On Top Magazine reports:

Cuyahoga County Executive and Ohio gubernatorial hopeful Ed Fitzgerald on Friday applauded a federal judge’s preliminary ruling ordering Ohio to recognize the out-of-state marriages of gay and lesbian couples… “As governor, I will support marriage equality and work to move Ohio forward for all its residents,” Fitzgerald, a Democrat, said in a statement. “Who you love and commit yourself to should not be prohibited by governments.”

Ohio’s current Republican Governor John Kasich opposes marriage equality.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Ohio.

USA, California: Anti Gay Group Goes to Court to Revive Anti Transgender Initiative

Wednesday, March 26th, 2014

Transgender FlagAn anti gay group is going to court to challenge the state’s count of signatures for an initiative to repeal the bill that offers protections to transgender kids in schools.

LGBTQ Nation reports:

The Pacific Justice Institute, a Christian legal group, announced Tuesday that it has filed papers in Sacramento Superior Court seeking a court order that would compel Secretary of State Debra Bowen to qualify the measure for the November ballot. Attorney Matthew McReynolds says the group is arguing that county election officers improperly invalidated more than 17,276 signatures from the petitions the referendum’s supporters circulated. McReynolds says his own signature was thrown out because it did not match the one on his original voter registration card, a discrepancy he attributed to the fact that he is now blind.

They never, ever, ever, ever give up, do they? They will even go after children in their zeal to keep the LGBT community down. Truly sickening.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in California.

USA, Nevada: Marriage Equality Ballot Initiative in 2016?

Thursday, February 13th, 2014

Nevada mapA new group has formed to get marriage equality on the ballot in Nevada in 2016.

Pink News reports:

A coalition of groups advocating for same-sex marriage in the US state of Nevada was launched this week, in order to push for a measure to legalise it in the state. Freedom Nevada was launched to coincide with Valentine’s Day. It hopes to ensure that a ballot measure in order to allow Nevada residents to approve same-sex marriage, is included in 2016, as expected. The launch also comes just days after the state admitted defeat and said it would not continue to defend its ban on same-sex couples marrying.

Which will bring marriage equality to Nevada first, the lawsuit or the ballot initiative?

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Nevada.

USA, Arkansas: Attorney General Rejects Marriage Equality Initiative Wording for a Third Time

Tuesday, October 8th, 2013

Arkansas Attorney General Dustin McDanielArkansas Attorney General Dustin McDaniel just rejected the working of two marriage equality initiatives for a third time. To be clear, he did greenlight an initiative to repeal the existing ban. But these measures would actually legalize same sex weddings in the state.

Edge Boston reports:

McDaniel on Monday cited several problems with the measures, submitted by the Arkansas Initiative for Marriage Equality and Jennifer Pierce of Little Rock. McDaniel must certify the measures before supporters can begin gathering signatures to place them on the ballot. Both proposals call for legalizing same-sex marriages in Arkansas. The Arkansas Initiative for Marriage Equality measure has been proposed for the 2016 ballot.

How about a little hint at what the correct wording should be? These guys must feel like they’re doing a challenge on the Amazing Race!

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Arkansas.

USA, Arkansas: Attorney General Rejects Marriage Equality Ballot Measure Again

Monday, August 12th, 2013

Arkansas Attorney General Dustin McDanielIt’s starting to sound like the Arkansas AG just has it in for a proposed marriage equality ballot measure. Arkansas Online reports:

Attorney General Dustin McDaniel has again rejected the wording of a proposed ballot measure that would repeal the Arkansas constitution’s ban on gay marriage. McDaniel on Monday cited several problems with the proposed constitutional amendment submitted by Arkansans for Equality. The proposed amendment must be approved by McDaniel’s office before the group can begin gathering signatures to place it on the ballot next year.

What’s next? The font size is too small?

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Arkansas.

USA, Florida: Groups Caution Against Hasty Marriage Equality Lawsuits in State

Tuesday, July 23rd, 2013

Equality FloridaA coaltion of LGBT rights groups is cautioning against a rush to the courts for marriage equality in Florida. The Orlando Sentinel reports:

The rationale: while groups in eight other states have already filed federal challenges in “strategic” locales where they hope to build precedent for overturning state gay marriage bans, Florida rests in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, which is considered one of the more conservative federal appeals courts.

They’re also worried about going to the ballot too soon:

But the groups seemed to write off another ballot initiative in Florida, citing other states that passed referenda but were short of the 60 percent majority Florida required to amend it’s constitution. While public opinion in Florida on the issue has shifted since passing Florida’s ban, it likely isn’t enough to justify a major campaign and millions in fundraising required.

Although I totally understand the impulse to file suits in all 50 states and get this thing over with, I also understand the need to be strategic in this and not overreach. What do y’all think?

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Florida.