National

Louisiana Supreme Court urged to rule on gay marriage

NEW ORLEANS, Louisiana – Lawyers on both sides of a same-sex marriage case urged Louisiana’s Supreme Court on Thursday to rule soon on the matter even though the U.S. Supreme Court is expected to do so by late June.

Kyle Duncan, making the state’s argument that its ban on same-sex marriage should stand, argued that the nation’s highest court “needs as much input as possible on this issue, especially from state supreme courts.”

Virginia to pay lawyers $520K in same-sex marriage case

NORFOLK, Virginia -- Virginia will pay $520,000 to the lawyers for two same-sex couples who successfully challenged the state's gay marriage ban.

The settlement agreement was filed Thursday in U.S. District Court in Norfolk. The attorneys had sought more than $1.7 million.

The law firm Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher will receive $459,000. Shuttleworth, Ruloff, Swain, Haddad & Morecock will receive $61,000.

Court papers show that attorneys logged 2,372 hours on the case. Their fees will be paid by the state Department of Treasury's Division of Risk Management.

Idaho: Gay rights bill dies in committee

BOISE, Idaho -- After more than 20 hours of public testimony, the Idaho House State Affairs Committee decided to kill the "Add the Words" bill that would ban discrimination against LGBT Idahoans.

The House State Affairs Committee — made up of the Legislature's most conservative lawmakers — voted 13-4 to hold the bill in committee. Democrats voted in favor of the bill.

In the nine years that LGBT activists have been fighting for it, this is the furthest the bill has come.

Gay couple take Yellow Cab Chicago to task for discrimination

CHICAGO, Illinois -- Yellow Cab Chicago is under fire after a gay couple was ejected from a taxi for kissing. Dr. Stephen Murphy and Dan Costa filed a discrimination complaint with the Illinois Department of Human Rights on Wednesday for the incident last summer.

Virginia: Senate panel votes to leave gay-marriage ban in law

RICHMOND, Virginia -- A state Senate committee isn't ready to take Virginia's overturned gay-marriage ban out of the state constitution.

Opponents said that would be premature, noting that the U.S. Supreme Court agreed this month to decide the gay-marriage issue for the entire nation.

On an 8-7 party-line vote Tuesday, the Republican-controlled Privileges and Elections Committee rejected a proposal to begin the process of repealing the amendment approved by Virginia voters in 2006 defining marriage as a union between a man and a woman.

Alabama: Judges group reverses course on gay marriage licenses

MONTGOMERY, Alabama – Gay marriage inched closer to being a reality in Alabama as a federal judge on Wednesday said probate judges have a constitutional duty to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

North Carolina: Gay marriage takes center stage at legislature

RALEIGH, North Carolina -- Gay marriage took center stage on Wednesday's first work day at the North Carolina General Assembly as the Senate's top leader pushed for religious exemptions for some court officials from marriage duties months after the state's same-sex marriage ban was struck down.

Bill would affirm U.S. commitment to global gay rights

WASHINGTON DC – In the wake of President Barack Obama’s commitment in the State of the Union to defend the human rights of the LGBT community, Sen. Edward J. Markey (D-Massachusetts) and Rep. Alan Lowenthal (D-California) today introduced bicameral legislation to affirm that LGBT human rights are a foreign policy priority for the U.S. government.

Bloomberg's blockbuster report of feuding on road to Supreme Court marriage arguments

Steve Friess with Bloomberg Politics today blows the lid off the feuding between attorneys who want to argue for marriage equality at the U.S. Supreme Court. Here is his lead paragraphs:

Sen. Lindsey Graham asks AG nominee: Why is gay marriage OK, but polygamy isn't?

During Loretta Lynch's confirmation hearing Wednesday, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) tried to take the attorney general nominee down the slippery-slope argument often made against the marriage equality movement by inquiring what the legal difference is between marriage of same-sex couples and that of three or more people.