Big Gay News

National News

Iowa Group Hopes To Oust Pro-Gay-Marriage Justices

The Des Moines Register reports that Iowa conservative activist Bob Vander Plaats, who failed to receive the Republican gubernatorial nomination in June, has announced he’s starting a group called Iowa for Freedom. It aims to oust three of the Iowa Supreme Court justices who were part of the unanimous 2009 ruling that led to the legalization of same-sex marriage in the state. The trio will be on the ballot in November. Vander Plaats told reporters, “They clearly legislated from the bench by saying Iowa will be a same-sex marriage state.” He added that the ultimate goal of the organization is to “preserve liberty, and protect our rights.”

California Same-Sex Couples Must Wait To Wed During Prop 8 Appeal

According to the Associated Press, a three-judge panel of the 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals has imposed an emergency stay on Chief US District Court Judge Vaughn Walker’s ruling that California’s Prop 8, banning same-sex marriage, was unconstitutional. He had ordered state officials to stop enforcing Prop 8. The stay effectively means no same-sex marriages will take place in California until the appellate court has had a chance to rule in the case. It agreed to fast-track consideration of the case, scheduling oral arguments for the week of December 6. A ruling isn’t likely until early next year.

Lesbian Cadet Quits West Point, Cites Don’t Ask

The Associated Press reports that West Point cadet Katherine Miller, who says she’s a lesbian, has resigned from the military academy over the ban on openly gay service members. In a statement, she explained, “I intend for my resignation to offer a concrete example of the consequences of a failed law and social policy.” Miller, who has been admitted to Yale University, notes that she’ll work through her studies and political activism to fight for a repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.

Cop Keeps Certification Despite Gay Adult Film

According to United Press International, former Hollywood, Florida, police officer Mike Verdugo, who lost his job after it came to light that he starred in a gay adult film, will be able to keep his police certification. Although the Hollywood Police Department sought to have his certification revoked, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement voted unanimously to let him keep it.

Gay Air Force Pilot Reaches Deal on Discharge

The Servicemembers Legal Defense Network says an agreement has been reached in federal court that prevents the US Air Force from discharging Lt. Col. Victor Fehrenbach until a hearing is held in a lawsuit aimed at stopping his discharge. It seeks to keep him from being discharged, as well as having the military’s ban on openly gay service members declared unconstitutional.

World News

German Court Rules Gay Couples Entitled to Equal Treatment

The Canadian Press reports that Germany’s highest court ruled gay couples in state-sanctioned civil partnerships are entitled to the same beneficial inheritance-tax rules as married heterosexual couples. It decided in favor of two plaintiffs, both of whom lost a partner, and had been forced to pay inheritance taxes as if they were distant relatives of the deceased. Prior to the ruling, a heterosexual spouse paid an inheritance tax of between 7 and 30 percent, while a same-sex spouse paid between 17 and 50 percent.

Mexico Supreme Court Upholds Gay Adoptions

According to the Associated Press, Mexico’s Supreme Court has voted to uphold Mexico City’s law legalizing same-sex adoptions. The justices ruled 9-2 that because same-sex marriages were legalized—which the court upheld in August—it would be discriminatory to prevent those couples from having the same parental rights as heterosexual couples. The ruling applies only to Mexico City, but other states must respect same-sex marriages and adoptions made in the capital.

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