Marriage equality could move forward in some U.S. states

A handful of U.S. states are poised to take up the issue of marriage equality afresh, due largely to incoming lawmakers who may tip the balance in favor of the controversial measure.

"The work of persuasion, of personal conversations, of talking to lawmakers and mobilizing against a well-funded anti-gay opposition" are among the primary tasks for the lobbying group Freedom to Marry, said founder Evan Wolfson. "With the freedom to marry within reach this year in states such as New York, Maryland and Rhode Island, now is the time to have those conversations and move marriage forward," he said.

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California court win for same-sex couples seeking benefits

In a victory for gay rights advocates, a federal judge has ruled that state employees in California can sue for discrimination over the federal government's exclusion of their same-sex spouses from a long-term health care program.

U.S. District Judge Claudia Wilken of Oakland denied an Obama administration request to dismiss the suit Tuesday and signaled that she is likely to overturn provisions of the 1996 so-called Defense of Marriage Act, which denies federal benefits to same-sex couples.

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Anti-gay definition of marriage bill passes 1st hurdle in Wyoming House

Wyoming law already defines marriage as a union between one man and one woman, but state law also requires the state to recognize marriages performed in other states.

House Bill 74 would close that loophole, specifying that marriages of same-sex couples performed in other states or other countries wouldn't be considered valid in Wyoming.

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BREAKING NEWS: In Iowa, GOP lawmakers trying to take away marriage equality

The new Republican-dominated House today revealed the first step in its anti-gay agenda, introducing a joint resolution that would allow Iowans to vote on a constitutional amendment to ban the freedom to marry.

Freedom to Marry's Evan Wolfson said, "Government should be on the side of all families, not putting barriers in their path as they seek to care for their loved ones. And the constitution should be respected as a shield of fairness for all, not used as a weapon to discriminate and harm.”

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Stopping West Virginia’s anti-marriage equality amendment

For the sixth year in a row, West Virginia will be considering a constitutional amendment defining marriage as between “one man and one woman.”

Last Thursday, the WV Senate and House issued a joint resolution calling for a public vote on marriage in 2012.

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Freedom to Marry Urges Iowa Legislature to Protect Iowa Families, Reject Anti-Gay Amendment

A statement from Evan Wolfson, Founder and Executive Director of Freedom to Marry, urging the Iowa Legislature to reject a bill introduced today that would harm Iowa families by amending the state constitution to strip away the freedom to marry from same-sex couples and bar other protections for their families.

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Parenting by gays more common in the south, census shows

According to census data, child rearing among same-sex couples is more common in the South than in any other region of the country.

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Marriage Equality – A Priority For Immigrants?

Marriage equality may not be the top priority for many New Yorkers, but even queer immigrant activists agree that its passage would expand civil rights in the state and codify the fundamental dignity of LGBT individuals and their families.

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Change in passport language is boon to gay rights activists

Riding the momentum from the repeal of "don't ask, don't tell," and the State Department's adoption of more gender-neutral language on passport applications, gay rights activists are pressing for more changes to federal policies that are unfavorable for the LGBT community.

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New York State Bar Association unveils 2011 state legislative priorities including marriage equality

Securing marriage equality for same-sex couples is among the top 2011 priorities of the New York State Bar Association's advocacy efforts on behalf of the public and the legal profession.

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