Weekly Political Roundup

Flags

  • The U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments in Christian Legal Society v. Martinez, a case that explores whether student groups are able to exclude students based on “status or beliefs” if doing so violates the school’s anti-discrimination policy.
  • President Obama’s administration is sending mixed messages about whether a repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell will happen this year as the President indicated in his State of the Union address.
  • U.S. Army Lt. Dan Choi and five other LGBT military veterans handcuffed themselves to the White House fence to protest Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. They were jailed for a day and released.
  • In Fiscal Year 2009, there were 443 servicemembers discharged under Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.
  • Members of the group Get Equal protested a meeting of the House Education and Labor Committee, urging them to vote on the Employment Nondiscrimination Act (ENDA). Rep. Barney Frank had already said the committee would do so “this week or next.”
  • The U.S. Senate confirmed the appointment of Marisa Demeo, an openly lesbian judge, to the D.C. Superior Court.
  • President Obama also nominated Edward Carroll DuMont, who is openly gay, to U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal District, making DuMont the first openly gay man to be nominated to a federal judgeship.
  • Massachusetts gubernatorial candidate Charlie Baker (R) said he would veto a bill protecting transgender people from discrimination, which he referred to as the “bathroom bill.” Oddly, Baker’s running mate, Richard R. Tisei, who is openly gay, sponsored the bill. Candidate Timothy P. Cahill (I) has also said he would veto it, but Gov. Deval Patrick (D) supports it.
  • A Texas appeals court heard arguments in the state’s challenge of a judge’s decision to allow a same-sex couple married in Massachusetts to divorce in the Lone Star State.

Around the world:

  • Argentina can’t seem to make up its mind about marriage equality, but the latest is that a judge has upheld the country’s first-ever wedding of two lesbians.
  • Liechtenstein looks set to offer some type of recognition to same-sex couples.
  • U.K. Prime Minister Gordon Brown called LGBT rights “a massive priority” for his Labour Party. Conservative leader David Cameron said his party is “totally committed” to LGBT rights. Wouldn’t that be refreshing here in the U.S.? The two major parties each vying to court the LGBT community.