Marriage Equality

Court ruling: Germany strengthens gay adoption rights

Germany's highest court on Tuesday strengthened the rights of same-sex couples to adopt, though stopped short of allowing gay and lesbian civil partnerships unlimited freedom to become adoptive parents.

The Constitutional Court ruled as expected that one member of a civil partnership must be given the right to adopt their partner's stepchild or adopted child. Until now, unlike heterosexual married couples, they were only able to adopt a partner's biological child.

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First 2013 marriage equality poll shows growing bipartisan majority support

WASHINGTON – The Respect for Marriage Coalition today released a memo from Anzalone Liszt Grove Research summarizing key findings from the first public opinion poll of 2013 on marriage rights for gay and lesbian couples.

The poll found that a growing bipartisan majority of registered voters support marriage rights. Three-quarters of voters believe that the freedom to marry is a constitutional right, and an even higher 83% believe that marriage for same-sex couples will become legal nationwide in the next decade.

The memo is included below.

Hawaii legislative panel decides not to hear same-sex marriage bill

HONOLULU — The state House Judiciary Committee has decided not to schedule a hearing for a bill that would legalize same-sex marriage in Hawaii, likely leaving the measure tabled for this legislative session.

Oregon may vote on marriage equality in 2014

PORTLAND, Ore. -- Basic Rights Oregon said today that it will launch on Valentine's Day a marriage petition drive that would be placed on the 2004 ballot.

After meeting on Sunday to discuss options, Basic Rights Oregon said the momentum is in favor marriage equality. The lastest poll, taken in December by Public Policy Polling, showed the Oregon voters supported same-sex marriage 54% to 40%.

Charlie Morgan, fighter for LGBT military equality, succumbs to cancer

Charlie Morgan, a Chief Warrant Officer of the New Hampshire National Guard and a plaintiff in a lawsuit challenging the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), died Sunday after a long battle with breast cancer, according to a statement by OutServe-SLDN.

Freedom to Marry spending $2 million to win more states

NEW YORK – Freedom to Marry announced today a 2013 drive to raise and invest $2 million through the Win More States Fund, with an initial focus on passing freedom to marry legislation in several states across the country.

In its first 2013 wave of contributions, Freedom to Marry is investing $800,000 in states where marriage bills are being debated – including Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Minnesota, New Jersey and Rhode Island – and is calling on others to be a part of these victories through strategic and early Win More States Fund investment.

Gay marriage battle, round 2, coming to Minnesota Capitol

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- The battle over gay marriage in Minnesota begins its shift from the ballot box to the state Capitol this month.

Kickoff events for both sides are scheduled around Valentine's Day as essentially the same combatants from last year's constitutional-amendment campaign are getting set to square off over state law.

"It's Minnesotans United for All Families and Minnesota for Marriage round two. Welcome to the show," said Autumn Leva, spokeswoman for Minnesota for Marriage, the lead group opposing gay marriage.

"What's right is right:" Widowed lesbian pushes for equal military benefits

When her spouse was killed in Afghanistan, Tracy Johnson drove across town to her mother-in-law’s house — clutching her marriage certificate — so she could hear the Army’s formal notification. No one from the military came to her door.

French government presents same-sex marriage, adoption bill to Parliament

PARIS — The French government has presented its plan to legalize same-sex marriage and adoption to Parliament for debate.

Justice Minister Christiane Taubira told the national assembly Tuesday that the bill constitutes an “act of equality. … Finally, marriage will be a universal institution.”

“We have never underestimated the importance of this reform,” Taubira said of the plan that’s divided the Catholic-majority country.

Business coalition launches in support of Respect for Marriage Act

WASHINGTON – A new business coalition, made up of Fortune 500 and brand name companies that support ending federal discrimination against legally married gay and lesbian couples, has been formed.

The Human Rights Campaign said the coalition opposes the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), under which lawfully married same-sex couples are not recognized by the federal government and are thereby denied more than 1,100 federal rights and benefits – including filing taxes jointly, taking unpaid leave to care for a sick spouse, and Social Security survivor benefits – that come with marriage.

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