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Alabama Probate Judges Association: Ruling Striking Down Gay Marriage Ban Doesn't Apply Statewide

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The Alabama Probate Judges Association has issued a statement saying District Judge Callie Granade's Friday ruling striking down the state's ban on gay marriage "does not open the door for the issuance of same sex marriage licenses" in the state, AL.com reports:

"Cari Searcy and Kim McKeand are the only plaintiffs in the case that was filed against Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange. The Alabama Probate Judges Association says that is a key point in the effect that this ruling has on the duties of probate judges."

Members of the association will hold a teleconference with reporters at 2 p.m. today to discuss the ramifications of the ruling.

Greg norris"Judge Granade's ruling in this case only applies to the parties in the case and has no effect on anybody that is not a named party. The probate judges were not parties in this matter," Al Agricola, attorney for the Alabama Probate Judges Association, stated in Saturday's press release. "The legal effect of this decision is to allow one person in one same sex marriage that was performed in another state to adopt their partner's child. There is nothing in the judge's order that requires probate judges in Alabama to issue marriage licenses to same sex couples."

Judge Greg Norris (right), president of the Alabama Probate Judges Association, said in the statement he hopes that misinterpretation of Friday's ruling will not cause confusion among the general public.

"As probate judges, our duty is to issue marriage licenses in accordance with Alabama law and that means we cannot legally issue marriage licenses to same sex couples," Norris said. "The recent federal ruling does not change that."

Probate Judges are elected in all 67 counties in Alabama and are statutorily given the responsibility of issuing and recording marriage licenses.​

Read the ful release from the Alabama Probate Judges Association AFTER THE JUMP...

Buzzfeed's Chris Geidner, meanwhile, offers up some context via Twitter:

Continue reading "Alabama Probate Judges Association: Ruling Striking Down Gay Marriage Ban Doesn't Apply Statewide" »


Alabama GOP Leaders Blast Federal Judge's Ruling Striking Down State Gay Marriage Ban

Alabama

State officials in Alabama are none too pleased with District Judge Callie V.S. Granade, who issued a ruling late Friday striking down the state's ban on same-sex marriage. 

Tweeted Governor Robert Bentley:

Alabama House Speaker Mike Hubbard was even less pleased with the ruling:

"It is outrageous when a single unelected and unaccountable federal judge can overturn the will of millions of Alabamians who stand in firm support of the Sanctity of Marriage Amendment. The Legislature will encourage a vigorous appeals process, and we will continue defending the Christian conservative values that make Alabama a special place to live."

Buzzfeed's Chris Geidner has something to point out though:

Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange, meanwhile, filed an emergency stay request with Judge Granade, calling her ruling "disappointing." If the stay request is denied, Strange can take it to the Eleventh Circuit Court but he should be aware the court turned down a similar stay request from the state of Florida last month. If no stay is issued, same-sex couples in the state should be free to tie the knot first thing Monday morning once county clerks' offices open. 

Read the ruling below via Equality Case Files:

1:14-cv-00208 #55 by Equality Case Files


Apple CEO Tim Cook Makes 'Substantial' Contribution To HRC Campaign Targeting His Home State Of Alabama

Six weeks after coming out publicly, Apple CEO Tim Cook has made a "substantial" contribution to a campaign aimed at bringing LGBT equality to his home state of Alabama. 

Cook.TimThe Human Rights Campaign announced Cook's contribution Thursday to its Project One America, an $8.5 million, three-year effort targeting Alabama, Arkansas and Mississippi. Cook grew up in South Alabama and attended Auburn University. 

The Associated Press reports: 

The amount of Cook's contribution to the Washington-based Human Rights Campaign wasn't disclosed, but the advocacy organization called it "substantial." ... 

The campaign includes advertising on TV and elsewhere, direct-mail fliers and staff members hired in each state.

"We hope Tim Cook's substantial personal investment inspires others to support this vital and historic project," Jason Rahlan, a spokesman for Human Rights Campaign, said in an email.

President Chad Griffin wrote on HRC's blog

When Tim first learned about HRC's Project One America – our bold, comprehensive campaign to dramatically advance equality for LGBT Americans in Alabama, Arkansas and Mississippi – he said, “I'm in.” Thanks to his generous personal financial investment in the program, together we will move the needle forward at the local and state level, tearing down misperceptions and providing concrete protections for those who need it most.

Shortly before coming out, Cook delivered a speech in Montgomery in which he said Alabama was moving "too slow on equality for the LGBT community." The state's only openly gay lawmaker recently announced she plans to name a nondiscrimination bill after Cook in the upcoming legislative session. 

Cook, who heads the world's largest corporation, is the only openly gay CEO of a Fortune 500 company. 

RedIn related news, Cook announced in an email to employees that Apple's Product (RED) holiday campaign raised over $20 million for AIDS research, Business Insider reports: 

"I’m thrilled to announce that our total donation for this quarter will be more than $20 million — our biggest ever — bringing the total amount Apple has raised for (PRODUCT) RED to over $100 million. The money we’ve raised is saving lives and bringing hope to people in need. It’s a cause we can all be proud to support," Cook wrote. 

Watch a video for HRC's Project America campaign in Alabama, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Apple CEO Tim Cook Makes 'Substantial' Contribution To HRC Campaign Targeting His Home State Of Alabama" »


Alabama to Recall 'N0H0M0' License Plate

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The "N0H0M0" Alabama license plate that made waves on social media earlier this week, will now be recalled by the state's Department of Revenue, the Associated Press reports:

Revenue Department spokeswoman Amanda Collier says the license plate with the saying "NOHOMO" slipped past its three-member review panel. She says the state prohibits personalized tags with profane or vulgar messages.

Collier added taht the car owner can appeal the decision. 


Alabama Issues 'N0H0M0' License Plate

Nohomo

The Alabama DMV's license plate "review and recall process" apparently overlooked one vehicle owner's "N0H0M0" license plate. Think Progress published the photo, taken by Scott Johnston, a Facilities Manager in the Atlanta, Georgia area, who saw it in a parking lot.

Writes TP's Zack Ford:

Amanda Collier, a spokesperson for the Alabama Department of Revenue, informed ThinkProgress that a process is in place to monitor what plates are banned. When a request for a personalized license plate is filed, a three-person review panel considers each application, sometimes offering alternative lettering for the requested message. Some messages are so explicit, however, that “no alternative can be offered” and the taxpayer’s request is denied. “There is a list of more than 6,000 plates that are strictly banned and will not be allowed on any tag in the state,” Collier explained, including “anything explicit, any profanity, or vulgar language.”


Alabama LGBT Non-Discrimination Bill to Be Named After Apple CEO Tim Cook

Alabama state Rep. Patricia Todd has announced her anti-discrimination bill protecting LGBT individuals from discrimination will be named after newly out Apple CEO Tim Cook, a native of the state.

Todd, the state's only openly gay lawmaker, said she had originally received a word of concern from Apple about Cook's name being attached to the measure but that the company later told her Cook would be pleased to have his name on the proposal, Reuters reports:

CookIn a statement provided to Reuters, Apple said: "Tim was honored to hear that State Rep. Todd wanted to name an anti-discrimination bill after him, and we're sorry if there was any miscommunication about it. We have a long history of support for LGBT rights and we hope every state will embrace workplace equality for all."

Todd said she hoped Cook could come to the legislature and speak on the bill's behalf, particularly its value in attracting business and talent to the state.

"We have extended the invitation to him, but he is a busy man and of course Apple comes first," she said. "I hope he can fit it into his schedule."

Todd plans on introducing the bill in the Alabama legislative session beginning in March. 

Prior to his coming out, Cook, in a speech before Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley and other state officials, criticized the state for lagging behind on LGBT rights. 


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