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same-sex marriage

Texas Sues Feds Over Benefits For Same-Sex Couples

Mar 19, 2015
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The state of Texas is suing the Obama administration for giving medical leave benefits to certain same-sex couples, according to an announcement Wednesday from Attorney General Ken Paxton.

Travis County Clerk / Twitter

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton on Friday asked the state Supreme Court to void a marriage license issued to two Austin women who became the first same-sex couple to legally wed in the state.

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AUSTIN-- The Texas Supreme Court has issued an emergency order blocking gay couples from obtaining marriage licenses after a lesbian couple wed in Austin.

Laura Buckman / Texas Tribune

Update: Gov. Greg Abbott released a brief statement saying Texas law defines marriage as a union between a man and a woman.  

Travis County Clerk Office / Twitter

A same-sex couple was married in Travis County despite the statewide gay marriage ban.

Paxton Requests Emergency Order To Block Gay Marriage Ruling

Feb 18, 2015
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Attorney General Ken Paxton on Wednesday asked the Texas Supreme Court to issue an emergency order blocking a local probate judge's ruling that the state’s same-sex marriage ban is unconstitutional.

With Supreme Court To Weigh Gay Marriage, What Now For Texas?

Jan 16, 2015
Katie Harbath / The Texas Tribune

The U.S. Supreme Court's decision to hear four cases with the potential to legalize gay marriage nationwide will impact Texas' own legal fight over same-sex unions. But how exactly is unclear. 

Appeals Judges Raise Doubts On Texas Gay Marriage Ban

Jan 9, 2015
Alexa Ura / Texas Tribune

NEW ORLEANS — Signaling significant doubt about the constitutionality of Texas' ban on same-sex marriages, two federal appeals judges on Friday questioned a state attorney's argument that marriage is a “subsidy” that the state has the right to grant and withhold.

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The week before the 84th Legislature convenes, some lawmakers still aren’t sure which chamber they’ll be working in. And a federal appeals court is poised to determine the fate of the state’s same-sex marriage ban and part of the state’s new abortion law.

Courtesy of Mark Phariss

On Friday, a federal court in New Orleans will hear arguments about Texas’ ban on same-sex marriage. 

JoshuaMHoover / Flickr

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday said it would not weigh in on gay marriage appeals in five states. That means same-sex weddings could soon take place in those states, including Oklahoma. Monday's court action could have an impact in Texas, where a judge’s order striking down the gay marriage ban is on appeal. 

Cruz: Amend U.S. Constitution To Preserve Marriage Bans

Oct 6, 2014
Bob Daemmrich / Texas Tribune

Hours after the U.S. Supreme Court paved the way for same-sex marriage bans to be lifted in five states, U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz called Monday for amending the U.S. Constitution to prevent either the federal government or the U.S. Supreme Court from overturning a state's ban on same-sex marriage.

A flood of legal briefs supporting and opposing same-sex marriage in Texas have been pouring into the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans. Tuesday was the final day for the friends of the court briefs to be filed.

Anne Marie Fox / Focus Features

Five stories that have North Texas talking: Matthew McConaughey wins an Oscar; Ol’ Man Winter is back in North Texas; what’s on your Texas bucket list; and more:

Friends from decades ago are at the center of the emotionally-charged, legal battle over same-sex marriage in Texas. 

But they’re on opposite sides.

Plano attorney Mark Phariss is one of the plaintiffs in the lawsuit that led to a federal judge ruling Wednesday that Texas' ban on gay marriage is unconstitutional.

Greg Abbott, the state attorney general and candidate for governor, is defending the ban and has filed notice he’ll appeal the judge’s ruling.

Anne Marie Fox / Focus Features

Five stories that have North Texas talking: A big weekend for a Dallas-themed movie; Greg Abbott's personal connection to the Texas gay marriage case; Allen ISD is closing its palatial stadium due to cracks; and more.

Doualy Xaykaothao / KERA News

What does Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott have in common with Mark Phariss, one of the plaintiffs who sued the state to challenge its gay marriage ban?

They were law school classmates. They knew each other. Phariss tells KERA they were good friends.

And now the attorney general and Phariss, an attorney who lives in Plano with his long-time partner, are on opposite sides of Texas’ brewing battle over gay marriage.

Phariss told KERA Thursday morning that during law school at Vanderbilt, he discussed politics over dinner with Abbott and his wife. Phariss is a Democrat, Abbott a Republican.

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Five stories that have North Texas talking: More on the gay marriage ruling; the Meadows Museum is handing out cupcakes; KERA holds a One Crisis Away public forum tonight; and more.

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A federal judge ruled Wednesday that Texas’ gay marriage ban is unconstitutional, but he's leaving the ban in place for now.

U.S. District Judge Orlando Garcia in San Antonio issued a preliminary injunction on the ban after two gay couples challenged a state constitutional amendment and a decade-old law.

He said the couples, one of which is from North Texas, will likely win their case and the ban should be lifted. But he said he would give the state time to appeal to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. The state will appeal the ruling, said Greg Abbott, the Texas attorney general.

timesnewsnetwork / Flickr.com

Same-sex marriage has long faced opposition in Texas, especially among Republicans. But, across the country, same-sex marriage is gaining supporters. That could change attitudes in Texas, which may ultimately affect the way political candidates treat the issue.

LM Otero / Associated Press

Oops.

Soon after a judge ruled that the Texas gay marriage ban was unconstitutional, State Sen. Dan Patrick, a Republican candidate for lieutenant governor, sent out this message on Twitter:

MARRIAGE= ONE MAN & ONE MAN. Enough of these activist judges. FAVORITE if you agree. I know the silent majority out there is with us!

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Reaction to Wednesday’s ruling that overturns Texas’ gay marriage ban has poured in from around Texas and across the country:

Laura Buckman / The Texas Tribune

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis says she supports gay marriage. She also called on her opponent Attorney General Greg Abbott to stop defending the definition of marriage in the Texas constitution as only between one man and one woman. 

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Five stories that have North Texas talking: hearings begin on a challenge against Texas’ gay marriage ban, a Fort Worth councilman goes to the Ivy Leagues, and more.

On Thursday Houston Mayor Annise Parker married her long-time partner Kathy Hubbard in Palm Springs, California. State Sen. Dan Patrick, a Houston Republican running for lieutenant governor responded with a press release stating: "This is obviously part of a larger strategy of hers to turn Texas into California."

wallyg / Flickr

The issues of same-sex marriage and divorce are set to go before the Texas Supreme Court.
 
The court is scheduled to hear arguments today on whether Texas can grant divorces to same-sex couples who married elsewhere.
 
Both cases involve same-sex couples who married legally in Massachusetts. Texas approved a constitutional ban on gay marriage in 2005.

The Pentagon says Texas is the only state that is refusing to process benefit applications for gay and lesbian couples who are legally married in other states. A commander with the Texas National Guard cited the state's constitutional ban on gay marriage and is recommending the couples apply at federal installations.

Bill Zeeble / KERA News

What does it mean for Texas now that the U.S. Supreme Court says a key part of the Federal Defense of Marriage Act is unconstitutional? Because Texas has its own DOMA law, there will be no immediate changes for most, but for others, perhaps.

Steve Rhodes / Flickr

Update, 12:40 p.m.:  In Dallas, some gay rights advocates called the Supreme Court's ruling on the Defense of Marriage Act a partial victory because states like Texas do not recognize same-sex marriages. However, Texas couples who were married in other states will now be eligible for federal benefits.

"While the SCOTUS ruled against federal discrimination, they left state discrimination in place," Lynn Walters, Executive Director of Hope for Peace and Justice, said in a press release. "While it is a partial victory, it means that far too many same gender couples will continue to suffer discrimination in a state like Texas."

 

BJ Austin / KERA News

The Dallas City Council did not take up a gay marriage equality resolution at City Hall today – as originally planned. But that didn’t stop leaders of the LGBT community from speaking on the issue.

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