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Marriage Equality Arrives in Alaska: PHOTOS

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As expected, Alaska began accepting applications for same-sex marriage licenses earlier this morning, following yesterday's federal court ruling overturning the state's ban on gay marriage.

Gay marriage is now legal in 30 states, according to Freedom to Marry. 

Marriage map

More photos of gay couples tying the knot in Alaska, AFTER THE JUMP...

Meanwhile, Alaska Governor Sean Parnell has pledged to continue wasting taxpayer money in his fruitless effort defending the state's unconstitutional gay marriage ban. 

[photos via Facebook]

Continue reading "Marriage Equality Arrives in Alaska: PHOTOS" »


Alaska Gov. Sean Parnell Vows to Continue Defending State's Unconstitutional Gay Marriage Ban

ParnellResponding to yesterday's federal court ruling overturning the state's gay marriage ban, Alaska Governor Sean Parnell released a statement vowing to appeal the decision.

Said Parnell:

"As Alaska’s governor, I have a duty to defend and uphold the law and the Alaska Constitution. Although the district court today may have been bound by the recent Ninth Circuit panel opinion, the status of that opinion and the law in general in this area is in flux. I will defend our constitution.”

Last week, a three-judge panel of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals overturned similar bans in Idaho and Nevada. Alaska, along with Arizona and Montana, fall under the Ninth Circuit's purview.

Alaska Dispatch News adds officials with the state's Bureau of Vital Statistics will begin accepting applications for same-sex marriage licenses at 8 AM (12 ET) today.


Alaska News Reporter and Marijuana Advocate Quits On-Air In Dramatic Fashion: WATCH

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In a bid to help drum up support for Alaska's Ballot Measure 2 - which would legalize recreational pot use in the state - Anchorage news reporter Charlo Greene announced on-air that she would be quitting her broadcast job to devote all her energy to the green cause. 

“Now everything you've heard is why I, the actual owner of the Alaska Cannabis Club, will be dedicating all of my energy toward fighting for freedom and fairness, which begins with legalizing marijuana here in Alaska," she said. "And as for this job, well, not that I have a choice but, f--k it, I quit.”

Watch the segment and a video of Greene explaining why she quit, AFTER THE JUMP...(warning: language)

Continue reading "Alaska News Reporter and Marijuana Advocate Quits On-Air In Dramatic Fashion: WATCH" »


Alaska Supreme Court Implements Survivor Benefits for Gay Couples

AlaskaGay marriage is not legal in the state of Alaska, but on Friday the state's Supreme Court made a major decision the state's fight for equality.

The court ruled the case of Harris v. Millennium Hotel, and their verdict ensures same-sex couples in Alaska are now offered the same survivor benefits as their straight counterparts. The ruling extends the scope of the state's workers’ compensation law, which requires employers to provide benefits to the spouse of a person who dies from a work-related injury.

Now everyone will have their day in court.

The case of Harris v. Millennium Hotel was filed by Lambda Legal, on behalf of Deborah Harris, who was seeking survivor benefits after her partner Kerry Fadely was killed by a disgruntled former employee at her place of employment, Anchorage’s Millennium Hotel.

(h/t Lambda Legal)


Alaskan Seaplane Has a Close Encounter With a Surfacing Whale: VIDEO

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In the remote town of Angoon, Alaska, Thomas Hamm shot this impressive footage of a seaplane coming this close to landing on top of a whale.

Luckily, the pilot was able to pull up at the last second and avoid collision, but not before the whale surfaced and cleared its blowhole – drenching the plane’s windshield.

Check it out, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Alaskan Seaplane Has a Close Encounter With a Surfacing Whale: VIDEO" »


Alaska Files Brief Arguing That 'as a Sovereign State' It Has Right to 'Define and Regulate Marriage'

In an official brief in the May 12 lawsuit Hamby v Parnell filed in the U.S. District Court in Anchorage, Alaska has stated that the five plaintiff couples have had none of their constitutional rights violated and therefore no legal justification for their goal.

AlaskaAlaska’s Department of Law, arguing on behalf of Gov. Sean Parnell, claim that the lawsuit raises a political question rather than a legal one and that under the amendment “Alaska has the right as a sovereign state to define and regulate marriage.”

In 1998, Alaskan voters passed a constitutional amendment to define marriage as existing only between one man and one woman. Plaintiffs in the May 12 challenge argued that the amendment clashes with a guarantee of due process and equal protection provided by the U.S. Constitution.

The lawsuit aims to have out-of-state same-sex marriages recognized in Alaska and to provide for same-sex marriage in the state.

Plaintiff Matthew Hamby argue that he and and his husband took a stand because “it's important to us that our family is recognized by the State of Alaska and that we have the same rights and privileges as others."


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