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Marriage News Watch – NOM Clueless Before US Supreme Court

Tuesday, April 14th, 2015

Matt BaumeWe have more details about the Supreme Court arguments at the end of the month.

The National Organization for Marriage has fumbled yet another brief.

And two public officials are suing for the right to discriminate.

Authored By Matt Baume – See the Full Story at AFER

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NOM Beats a Dead Horse in North Carolina Marriage Equality Case

Saturday, November 8th, 2014

NOM LogoProving it never gives up on a dead horse until it’s beaten, cut up, burned, and buried, The National Organization for Marriage is trying to appeal the settled North Carolina case.

Joe.My.God reports:

Anti-gay state lawmakers in North Carolina, joined by the National Organization for Marriage, have appealed Judge Max Cogburn’s October 10 ruling striking down the state’s gay marriage ban to the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals.

The News & Observer reports: Within hours of a split ruling by a 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals panel upholding gay marriage bans in four states, attorneys for North Carolina legislative leaders filed notice in the federal courts of their plans to appeal rulings in North Carolina that struck down a gay marriage ban. The court document, filed by John C. Eastman [right], a California lawyer and chairman of the National Organization for Marriage, outlines the plans of Phil Berger [left], president pro tem of the N.C. Senate, and Thom Tillis [middle], speaker of the state House, to appeal a ruling in October by U.S. District Judge William Osteen Jr. that nullified a 2012 amendment to the state constitution defining marriage as a union between a man and a woman.

To go with another farm metaphor, talk about slamming the barn door when the horse is already gone.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in North Carolina.

North Carolina Judge OK’s GOP Intervention, Says It’s a Waste of Time

Wednesday, October 15th, 2014

North Carolina MapThe GOP and NOM have been granted the standing to intervene in a marriage equality case in North Carolina. Joe.My.God reports:

United States District Court Judge William Osteen today ruled that the GOP/NOM legal team has the standing to appeal North Carolina’s marriage equality case… But check out this smackdown towards the end of the ruling: Notwithstanding some of the ongoing cases on a national level, this discussion is merely academic in this court. The United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit has issued its ruling in Bostic. As recognized by the district court in General Synod, this district court, sitting in North Carolina and the Fourth Circuit, is bound to apply that law. The parties to this case have the right to expect nothing less, whether they agree with the law or not. The issue presently before this court is solely whether to permit intervention for the purpose of preserving and taking an appeal. Although it is a very close issue, this court concludes that the motion to intervene should be granted, but only for the purpose of lodging an objection and preserving that objection to this court’s application of Bostic.

In otherwords, you’ll get your day in court, but at this point you’re just wasting everyone’s time and money.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in North Carolina.

Marriage Equality: What’s Going On in North Carolina

Friday, October 10th, 2014

North Carolina MapAnd in North Carolina, the march toward marriage equality in the wake of the non-decision continues. Here’s what happened yesterday.

The state’s GOP leaders hired the Chairman of the National Organization for Marriage, of all people, to head up their attempt to intervene in the case. LGBTQ Nation reports:

House Speaker Thom Tillis and Senate leader Phil Berger filed a motion seeking to intervene in legal challenges to the state’s gay marriage ban approved by voters in 2012. They also asked for a one-week delay to file additional documents. The GOP legislators have hired California lawyer John C. Eastman, chairman of the conservative National Organization for Marriage. Berger spokeswoman Shelly Carver said Eastman has agreed to forgo his first $10,000 in legal fees. After that, he will be paid $400 an hour.

Seriously. I guess they couldn’t find an impartial lawyer to take the case? The state asked for an 8 day delay to prepare their case, but a judge shot the request down. Joe.My.God reports:

…the attorneys requested an extension of eight days to make their arguments against same-sex marriage. Late Thursday evening, U.S. District Court Judge William Osteen issued an order denying their request. “In light of the stage of this litigation, and the arguments and positions previously asserted by both parties to this case, this court does not find good cause to extend the time for filing a proposed Answer,” Osteen’s order read. The judge gave them until noon tomorrow to file their motion to intervene.

In the meantime, church leaders and court officials were preparing for same sex weddings. The News Observer reports:

As the legal machinations grind on, prospective spouses, church leaders and court officials are preparing for the unprecedented change in North Carolina’s legal definition of marriage that could arrive any day. There were no lines of hopeful couples at the Wake County Justice Center on Thursday, but court employees cased the lobby, planning for potentially large crowds and trying to keep TV camera crews out of the way. In the office of the register of deeds, Laura Riddick, employees prepared to modify hundreds of marriage documents by hand. The state hasn’t yet given much guidance, according to Riddick.

Gay and lesbian couples are waiting, too. LGBTQ Nation reports:

Same-sex couples in North Carolina are eagerly awaiting federal court rulings they hope will allow them to get married. Lawyers for the American Civil Liberties Union of North Carolina filed a request late Wednesday asking Chief U.S. District Court Judge William L. Osteen, Jr. to strike down the state’s gay marriage ban.

And the Asheville City Hall flew a huge rainbow flag to celebrate the coming of marriage equality. Joe.My.God reports:

The Campaign for Southern Equality reports that gay couples are camping out at county clerk offices across North Carolina in anticipation of a ruling to enact same-sex marriage.

Expect a ruling in North Carolina SOON.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in North Carolina.

Asheville Rainbow Flag

Matt Baume’s Marriage News Watch 9/1/14

Monday, September 1st, 2014

Matt BaumeAnti-gay attorneys took a beating before the Seventh Circuit last week, trying and failing to defend marriage bans before a panel of hostile judges. Now all eyes are on the Supreme Court to see which cases they’ll take up in their fall session. There’s another major marriage argument coming up in a few days. And the National Organization for Marriage still isn’t giving up in Oregon, despite having lost months ago.

Authored By Matt Baume – See the Full Story at AFER

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National Organization for Marriage Knocked Down Again in Oregon

Wednesday, August 27th, 2014

NOM LogoThe National Organization for Marriage faced another setback in their fight against marriage equality.

LGBTQ Nation reports:

A federal appeals court has dismissed the National Organization for Marriage’s effort to appeal an Oregon court ruling that allows same sex marriage. The Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals issued its decision on Wednesday. Several same-sex couples sued the state of Oregon last year arguing the ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional.

Who even knew they were still fighting Oregon marriage equality? It’s just sad.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Oregon.

NOM Hate March Flops

Friday, June 20th, 2014

NOM Hate March

photo credit: Zach Ford

The NOM hate march in Washington DC drew only about 2,000 people, most of those bused in for free.

The Washington Blade reports:

Many of the estimated 2,000 people from across the country held NOM signs that defined marriage as between a man and a woman. Others carried posters reading “each child deserves a father and a mother” in Spanish. “When we hear time and time again from some in the media that the fight to protect marriage is over, we are here today to say no,” said NOM President Brian Brown. “We are here to say that no matter the circumstances, no matter how difficult it may be, we will stand in and out of season for the truth of marriage.”

Metro Weekly reports on some familiar faces who attended the rally:

Rep. Tim Huelskamp was the only current member of Congress to speak at the rally, mere yards from the House Chamber. “There are those intent on destroying marriage who claim history is on their side,” declared the Kansas Republican, who proposed amending the U.S. Constitution to define marriage as between a man and a woman mere days after the U.S. Supreme Court’s landmark marriage-equality rulings last June… The most recognizable names at the rally were former Republican presidential candidates Rick Santorum and Mike Huckabee. Santorum, who paused between sentences of his speech to allow a translator to repeat his words in Spanish, insisted that the institution of marriage must be reclaimed.

Think Progress interviewed folks at the rally:

Both on the dais and in the crowd, religious beliefs were the driving force behind attendees’s opposition to same-sex marriage. ThinkProgress spoke with several members of the crowd to get a sense of why they were participating, and most cited their religious beliefs as their primary motivation. In particular, many were religious leaders themselves or specifically came to the march with a church group. Watch a compilation of ThinkProgress’ interviews from the March for Marriage:

And remember how Archbishop Cordileone swore the whole rally had nothing to do with the gays?

SF Gate report:

“Kneeling on the sidewalk across from the U.S. Supreme Court, San Francisco’s Roman Catholic archbishop led several thousand protesters Thursday in prayer against same-sex marriage. Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone was the star attraction of a rally in Washington organized by National Organization for Marriage President Brian Brown, the nation’s leading opponent of same-sex marriage. Brown tapped Cordileone as the first speaker at the event and had him lead the group in prayer after a march from the west front of the U.S. Capitol to the Supreme Court steps.”

Oops. Will he be called on it?

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Washington, DC.

NOM Joins Push to Encourage Governor Corbett to Appeal Pennsylvania Marriage Equality Decision

Wednesday, June 11th, 2014

NOM LogoThe National Organization for Marriage is jumping on the bandwagon to push Governor Corbett to appeal the Pennsylvania marriage equality decision.

Joe.My.God reports:

Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett has until June 20th to appeal the overturn of the ban on same-sex marriage and NOM is flailing about in typical fashion. The people of Pennsylvania have been denied due process on so many levels when it comes to the marriage debate — it must stop. Take the time today to join our friends at the Pennsylvania Pastors’ Network in urging support for resolutions spearheaded by Rep. Daryl Metcalfe (R.-Butler) in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives and Sen. John Eichelberger (R.-Hollidaysburg) in the Senate calling for the Corbett Administration to appeal the recent court decision that invalidated Pennsylvania’s Defense of Marriage Act.

So far, Governor Corbett has shown no desire to revisit the decision not to appeal.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Pennsylvania.

Oregon Marriage Equality Upheld as Supreme Court Turns NOM Away

Thursday, June 5th, 2014

US Supreme CourtThe US Supreme Court sent NOM packing yesterday, denying the group’s request to halt Oregon marriage equality in its tracks.

The Oregonian reports:

In a terse, one-sentence order, the court rejected a request by the National Organization for Marriage to stay the May 19 federal court ruling allowing gays and lesbians to marry in Oregon. Justice Anthony Kennedy, who rules on emergency cases in the western region of Oregon, referred the issue to the full court, which then declined to get involved in the Oregon case. “Love is the law in Oregon,” said a statement from Amy Ruiz, deputy campaign manager for Oregon United for Marriage, a group supporting gay marriage. “Try as they might, the opposition cannot take that away.”

I was a little shocked that the Court had even agreed to entertain the idea – NOM had already been blocked from intervening at the federal court and the appeals court. But it’s surely a good sign for the battles to come that Kennedy let the decision stand.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Oregon.

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.