Equal Rights

Did Hawaii Senate advance marriage bill today?

SDGLN media partner GLBTN has the breaking news out of Hawaii.

Did the Hawaii Senate pass SB1, the bill that would approve same-gender marriage in the Aloha State?

Will the Hawaii House take a vote?

Find out here in "This Just In: A live blog featuring LGBT news," which is updated constantly as the news warrants.

Two same-gender couples sue Texas for right to marry

SAN ANTONIO, Texas -- A gay couple and a lesbian couple filed a federal lawsuit on Monday for the right to marry in Texas, which bans marriage equality.

Mark Pharris and Vic Holmes, and Cleopatra De Leon and Nicole Dimetman, are the plaintiffs in the case filed in San Antonio by the law firm of Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld. According to mysanantonio.com:

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Hawaii resumes marriage debate in special session today

(Editor's note: Click HERE to watch the hearing LIVE.)

HONOLULU -- Hawaii returns to the marriage-equality debate today when lawmakers return to the state Capitol for a special session called by Gov. Neil Abercrombie, a Democrat who wants gay and lesbian couples to have the right to marry.

Mass gay wedding planned in Australia ahead of court fight

CANBERRA, Australia -- Gay and lesbian couples are planning to join in on a mass same-gender marriage ceremony on Dec. 7 as the Australian government plans a court fight to stop the nuptials.

ACT, the territory encompassing the nation's capital of Canberra, legalized marriage equality this week and the new law was immediately challenged to the High Court of Australia.

Today, the High Court resisted government efforts to expedite the case and adjourned the matter until Nov. 4. Australian media are reporting that hearing now are most likely to be set in early December.

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New Mexico Supreme Court to hear marriage case on Wednesday

SANTA FE, N.M. -- With New Jersey now in the fold as the 14th state to embrace marriage equality, the nation’s attention is swiftly shifting to New Mexico where the state Supreme Court on Wednesday will hear oral arguments on same-gender marriage.

New Mexico is the only U.S. state that has not taken a legal stance on marriage equality. The state Constitution doesn’t address the issue, and Legislature has failed in several attempts since 2008 to pass legislation involving civil unions, domestic partnerships and marriage equality.

Australian Capital Territory OKs marriage equality

CANBERRA, Australia -- Australian Capital Territory -- Australia's version of the District of Columbia in the U.S. -- on Tuesday made history as the first place in Australia to embrace marriage equality.

The ACT comprises Australia's capital of Canberra and 910 square miles of surrounding land with a population of about 360,000. The Australian state of New South Wales surrounds ACT.

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Gov. Christie drops appeal of marriage ruling; New Jersey the 14th state to OK marriage equality

TRENTON, N.J. -- Just hours after gay and lesbian couples in New Jersey began marrying one minute after midnight today, Gov. Chris Christie said that the State would drop its appeal of the federal court ruling mandating marriage equality.

Gay and lesbian couples begin exchanging vows in New Jersey | VIDEO

NEWARK, N.J. -- Newark Mayor Cory A. Booker, the new Senator-elect from New Jersey, stayed up late Sunday night to marry seven gay, lesbian and straight couples in the moments after same-gender marriages were allowed to begin at 12:01 am Monday Eastern Time.

During his years as mayor, Booker had refused to conduct any civil ceremonies at City Hall until all loving couples could legally marry in New Jersey. Late Friday, the New Jersey Supreme Court refused to issue a stay of an order by a federal judge who had ruled that marriage equality would begin on Oct. 21.

Mayors must conduct same-gender marriages, France's high court rules

PARIS -- France's Constitutional Court, equivalent to the U.S. Supreme Court, ruled today that mayors must conduct same-gender marriages even if they oppose them.

Seven mayors who oppose marriage equality, which is the law of the land throughout France, sued the government. They contended that they should be able to skip out of conducting same-gender marriages due to "freedom of conscience."

Michigan marriage-equality case won't be decided today as judge sets trial date

DETROIT – A federal judge today heard arguments on motions to strike down Michigan’s voter-approved ban on same-gender marriage, but while he said “time is of the essence” he instead set a trial date on Feb. 25, 2014.

District Court Judge Bernard Friedman ruled against a lesbian couple, two nurses from Hazel Park, Mich. who had sued to win joint custody of their adopted children and eventually expanded the case to include marriage rights.