Monday, November 2, 2009

Morning Sweep

The New York Times editorializes on current political battles for LGBT rights, and highlights New York as a "particularly frustrating" situation: "We do not have a precise head count. But we suspect that once the bill got to the floor, a majority of the Senate’s 62 members would recognize that same-sex marriage is a fundamental civil right. Continuing to delay a vote shows disrespect for New York citizens injured by the status quo. The time for a vote is right now."

A Brooklyn trial judge has found that a transgender non-biological parent has custody rights in a dispute over the child he has helped raise.

Chris Christie, a Republican challenger for governor in New Jersey, is attempting to use marriage equality as a wedge issue in the 11th hour.

As expected, Obama has announced that the 22-year-old ban on travelers with HIV coming to the U.S. will been lifted.

The U.S. Department of Justice has argued in court papers in the lawsuit filed by the state of Massachusetts that states allowing same-sex couples to marry can't force the federal government to provide protections to those couples because of DOMA. Although this position runs contrary to the Obama administration's desire to repeal DOMA, the DOJ has an obligation to side with Congress and defend any reasonable laws they pass.

Tomorrow's vote in Maine will decide whether the state will accept or reject marriage for same-sex couples. But Maine Gov. John Baldacci, who supports marriage for same-sex couples, says he doesn't see this as a national issue -- he's "just thinking about Maine."

The ballot measure in Washington regarding domestic partnership benefits has brought attention to the nature of petitions and whether the names of their signers should be a matter of public record.

Much attention is also being paid to tomorrow's vote in Kalamazoo, Michigan, where voters will decide whether to add sexual orientation and gender identity to the city's non-discrimination ordinance.

San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom, a longtime vocal advocate for LGBT equality, has dropped his bid to become governor of CA.

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