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same-sex marriage

Hyde Park Methodist Church

Local branches of the United Methodist Church are reacting to a landmark vote. 

On Feb. 26, representatives of the UMC voted 438 to 384 in favor of the “Traditional Plan,” which continues the ban on same-sex marriage weddings and LGBTQ clergy members.

Hyde Park United Methodist Church

Same-sex marriage and the acceptance of LGBTQ clergy are issues that many religions are dealing with today. Now, the United Methodist Church is holding a special session to vote on a proposal regarding those subjects.

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Florida law would say churches can't be forced to marry same-sex couples under a bill passed by the House, despite opponents who say the legislation isn't needed.

With same-sex marriage now legal nationwide, lawmakers in numerous states are preparing for a new round of battles in 2016 over whether to grant discrimination protections to LGBT people or religious exemptions to nonprofits and businesses that object to gay marriage.

Florida Same-Sex Parents Ask Judge To Make It Birth-Certificate Official

Dec 17, 2015

Nearly a year after same-sex marriages started in Florida, a legal decision could be looming in a dispute about birth certificates for children of same-sex couples.

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Robin Sussingham / WUSF News

Same-sex couples have been able to marry in Florida since Jan. 6, 2015. On June 26, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that same-sex marriage is legal nationwide. What are the impacts of this ruling on Florida’s same-sex couples? And what questions are they asking as they consider tying the knot?

The U.S. Supreme Court is hearing arguments Tuesday about whether states have the power to ban same-sex marriage. A dozen couples are challenging the bans in Ohio, Michigan, Kentucky and Tennessee.

This week's same-sex-marriage cases at the Supreme Court brought in a record number of friend-of-the-court briefs — 148 of them, according to the court, beating the previous record of 136 in the 2013 Obamacare case.

These briefs, known formally by their Latin name, amicus briefs, are filed by groups, individuals, and governments that have an interest in the outcome.

Doug Parton / DP Photography

 The U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments April 28 on the issue of same-sex marriage.  

Several cases from Cases from Ohio, Tennessee, Michigan and Kentucky have been combined into one case, known as Obergefell v. Hodges.

Navigating cultural issues like same-sex marriage and immigration has proved tricky for Republicans.

The country has grown rapidly more accepting of gay and lesbian marriage and relationships. And despite a shrinking base of white support and a fast-growing Latino population, Republicans have struggled to adjust.

Robin Sussingham / WUSF News

Same-sex marriage has been legal in Florida since Jan. 6, 2015. The issue is heading to the U.S. Supreme Court this summer, but in the meantime, marriage licenses are being issued to same-sex couples.

'Cowboy' Wedding a Long Time Coming

Jan 11, 2015
Tom Urban / News Service of Florida

Wearing cowboy boots and bolo ties, Steve Schlairat and Ozzie Russ exchanged wedding vows as they stood beside two saddles perched atop bales of hay on a chilly Saturday afternoon with friends and family looking on.

The longtime duo are among hundreds of gay and lesbian couples who received marriage licenses or were married this week after a federal judge's decision striking down Florida's gay-marriage ban took effect at 12:01 a.m. Tuesday.

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With same-sex marriage now the law in Florida, a lot of new husbands and wives will be able to join their spouse's state of Florida insurance plan.

Marriage qualifies as a life-changing event under the state's plan, so enrollees won't have to wait for the open enrollment period to add their spouses. But the window to do so is from now to March 6.

That's only about 60 days.

Mark Pudlow is a spokesman for The Florida Education Association. The union represents 140,000 Florida teachers.

Robin Sussingham / WUSF News

Tuesday marked the first day in Florida history that same sex couples were able to legally marry. To mark the occasion, Hillsborough County Clerk Pat Frank held a group wedding at a park across the street from the courthouse. Some of the couples had waited decades for this.

The church bells rang out near the Joe Chillura courthouse square. The sun was shining and at noon Pat Frank took the podium in front of 20 or 30 same sex couples - plus a throng of reporters and well-wishers.

Same-sex couples in Florida's Miami-Dade County can begin to get married as early as Monday after a judge lifted a stay on her July ruling that declared the state's ban on gay marriage unconstitutional.

Circuit Judge Sarah Zabel's ruling allows gays couples in the county to get married as of 2 p.m. ET. Such marriages performed out of state will be recognized in Miami-Dade immediately.

Gay marriages in the rest of the state are set to begin at 12:01 a.m. Tuesday. That follows a decision in August by federal Judge Robert Hinkle who declared the ban unconstitutional.

State of Florida

Just days before Florida's ban on gay marriage is scheduled to be lifted, the state's top legal officer wants a federal judge to clarify whether clerks in all counties can issue marriage licenses to gay couples.

Attorney General Pam Bondi filed a legal response to U.S. District Judge Robert Hinkle late Monday. Hinkle previously ruled that Florida's same-sex marriage ban is unconstitutional. He stayed his ruling, but the stay is scheduled to expire Jan. 5.

Judge Orders State Response On Same-Sex Marriage License Fight

Dec 25, 2014

A federal judge Wednesday ordered the state to respond by Monday in an increasingly heated legal debate about whether county clerks should begin issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples on Jan. 6.

The Clerk of Court in Washington County is asking a federal judge to clarify his decision ruling against Florida’s gay marriage ban.

The move comes as the Florida Association of Clerks and Comptrollers doubles down on its position that the ruling applies only to one couple in one county. Leon County Clerk of Court Bob Inzer says he’s not deviating from that position.

“I will be taking my guidance from my council on this until someone can demonstrate to me that his council is not accurate," he says.

Gay couples who want to marry in Florida were delighted with Friday's ruling from the U.S. Supreme Court. The court left a federal judge's ruling in place, declaring the state's gay marriage ban unconstitutional. While couples hope they can tie the knot early in the new year, the legal situation remains unclear.

The Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals gave Florida’s marriage equality activists a procedural win Wednesday.  A three-judge panel ruled a lower court’s order overturning the state’s same-sex marriage ban will go into effect as planned after January 5.

State Attempt to Reopen Medicaid Case Draws Fire

Oct 30, 2014
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With a federal judge possibly close to ruling in the case, plaintiffs' attorneys are objecting to a state attempt to offer new evidence in a lawsuit about whether Florida has adequately provided care to children in the Medicaid program.

The lawsuit, which has been spearheaded by the Florida Pediatric Society, was filed in 2005. A trial ended in 2012, and federal judge Adalberto Jordan is expected to issue a ruling soon, according to court documents.

gaaaaabrielle.blogspot.com

A federal judge is being asked to allow same sex couples to marry in Florida in the wake of a decision by the U.S. Supreme Court.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Florida filed a motion Tuesday with U.S. District Judge Robert Hinkle. Hinkle previously ruled Florida's ban on gay marriage unconstitutional, but stayed the ruling until other cases around the country were resolved.

The U.S. Supreme Court decided this week to turn away appeals from five states seeking to prohibit gay and lesbian unions.

Florida Republican Attorney General Pam Bondi and Democratic challenger George Sheldon clashed with each other and with Libertarian Bill Wohlsifer on Monday, tackling issues such as medical marijuana and same-sex marriage during the first and only debate in the race for Florida's top legal job.

Bondi said she worries a ballot initiative legalizing medical marijuana will allow the drug to fall into the hands of young teens, but Sheldon said he trusts doctors to prescribe it if the measure passes.

In a stunning move, the U.S. Supreme Court Monday stepped out of the gay-marriage debate — at least for now. It refused to review lower court decisions that struck down state bans on same-sex marriage; but the decision not to decide will nevertheless have an immediate and dramatic effect, bringing the total number of states where gay marriage is legal up to 30.

Anesthesiologists Fight AHCA over New Rule

Aug 5, 2014
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 The Florida Society of Anesthesiologists this week filed a legal challenge against the state Agency for Health Care Administration because of a new proposal dealing with anesthesiology services in ambulatory surgical centers. The challenge, which will go before an administrative law judge, argues that AHCA overstepped its legal authority in drawing up a proposed rule. At least in part, the challenge contends the rule would allow certified registered nurse anesthetists to supervise anesthesiologist assistants.

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Americans who oppose same-sex marriage often face "intolerance" from those who support it, Republican Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida said Wednesday in a speech about values that appeared aimed at wooing social conservatives.

Wedding bells are not ringing yet for same-sex couples in Monroe County.

Aaron Huntsman and William Lee Jones had hoped to apply for a marriage license on Tuesday after last week Monroe Circuit Judge Luis Garcia ruled in their favor seeking the right to marry. But State Attorney General Pam Bondi immediately appealed Garcia’s decision, automatically putting the process on hold.