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USA, Texas State Follows in Oklahoma’s Footsteps, Won’t Process Benefits For Any National Guard Couples

Wednesday, November 27th, 2013

Texas Governor Rick PerryRick Perry decided to have Texas issue a giant “f*ck you” to his state’s National Guard couples.

America Blog explains:

Texas Governor Rick Perry has decided to no longer process benefits for heterosexual service members in the state, as a means of avoiding having to process such benefits for gay service members. It’s a veritable rerun of the South’s strategy during the civil rights era to shut down city schools and swimming pools, rather than let African-Americans spoil the racist fun through integration. The policy also had an added discriminatory benefit – by shutting down the pools, racist southern politicians hoped whites would blame blacks for the inconvenience.

It’s amazing the lengths these folks will go to in order to stick it to gay and lesbian couples.

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UK: Up to Two Thirds of Conservatives May Not Vote for Marriage Equality Bill; Marriage Tax Credit Dropped

Saturday, February 2nd, 2013

London ParliamentWith a vote on England and Wales’ marriage equality bill just days away, reports are surfacing that between a third and two thirds of conservative MP’s may vote against the bill, the Global Post reports:

Not only are backbenchers in the centre-right party, which governs in coalition with the smaller Liberal Democrats, likely to vote against the bill but grass-roots Tories are also turning away, newspapers said. Reports suggested that between 130 and 200 of the 303 Conservative lawmakers will not back the bill when it is debated in parliament’s lower House of Commons for the first time on Tuesday.

Some are spooked by a new poll of conservative voters:

A ComRes poll of just over 2,000 people who voted Conservative at the 2010 general election, found that 20 percent of them agreed that they “would have considered voting Conservative at the next election but will definitely not if the coalition government legalises same-sex marriage”.

Some may also be upset that a special tax break for married couples, rumored to be included as a sweetener for conservative votes, will not be part of the bill. Gay Star News says:

The tax break is in the coalition agreement but Liberal Democrat MPs would be allowed to abstain. It is expected that one member of a married couple or civil partnership would be able to move #750 of their tax-free personal allowance to their partner, reducing their tax bill. This would be worth about #150 a year to basic-rate taxpayers. A senior government source said, however: ‘It won’t be in the Budget but it will be in this parliament. This Budget obviously, with all that has happened in recent weeks and months, will be very much focused on growth in the economy’.

However, Pink News is reporting that Labour Leader Ed Milliband thinks Labour will come out in droves to vote for the bill:

Labour leader Ed Miliband has predicted that the majority of his party will support equal marriage when it goes to a vote on Tuesday in the House of Commons. Mr Miliband told The House magazine he expected a “big turnout of Labour MPs in full support” of the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill.

Lots of drama in the UK and France this week – who would have thought that both these countries would be debating marriage equality at the same time?

England, United Kingdom: Government Considers Married Couples Tax Break to Appease Backbenchers Over Marriage Equality Plans

Sunday, November 25th, 2012

UK: Government Considers Married Couples Tax Break to Appease Backbenchers Over Marriage Equality PlansMinisters are considering bringing in tax breaks for married couples as soon as next spring to try and appease Tory backbenchers over gay marriage.

Conservative sources say they want to introduce transferrable allowances – worth around #150 a year – as part of the 2013 Budget.

The controversial move will spark a huge row with their Lib Dem coalition partners, who are against the plans. But it would help placate Tory MPs who are angry about David Cameron’s insistence on legalising gay marriage.

Authored By Daniel Martin – See the Full Story at the Daily Mail

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USA: Esurance to Extend Discounts to Married, Partnered Same Sex Couples

Monday, July 2nd, 2012

EsuranceIn news that somehow slipped under the national radar, last week, the online affiliate of Allstate Insurance, announced it would be giving committed same-sex partners in civil unions or domestic partnerships in 21 states the same auto insurance discount that’s extended to legally married couples.

Why is this important, other than for being yet another step toward social and political acceptance for the LGBT community? It’s more cash in the bank: Married policyholders receive an average 10 percent discount off their auto insurance premiums compared with single policyholders.

Previously, Esurance extended discounts to same-sex couples living in California, Washington, Oregon, and Illinois. The program is now expanding to include motorists in any of the states in which it does business, regardless of whether or not the laws within those states actually acknowledge the partnerships or allow gay marriage.

Full Story from Forbes

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