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Charlie Crist Pens Letter to Florida Gov. Rick Scott Asking Him to Stop Defending Gay Marriage Ban

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Charlie Crist has written an open letter to Rick Scott asking the Florida governor to stop defending the state's gay marriage ban in court, writing that "Florida deserves a governor who will stand up for all of the people of this state."

Four years ago, a district court of appeals ruled Florida’s ban on gay and lesbian adoption unconstitutional.
 
When the ruling came down, I believed it was my job as Governor to exercise the authority vested in me by the people and our Constitution. The day the judge ruled, I declared Florida’s adoption ban over. Gay and lesbian parents began adopting the children they loved immediately.
 
It is one of my proudest moments as an elected official.
 
Last Thursday Federal District Judge Robert Hinkle gave you the same chance to speak out for what is right when, in a ruling that would apply statewide, he struck down Florida’s ban on same sex marriage. By declaring the marriage ban finished you could discourage any future appeals and end the nightmare that loving same sex couples all across our state endure every single day, ending court battles that could drag on for months or years.

You can read the full letter HERE

Crist, who as Republican governor supported the constitutional ban on same-sex marriage when it was passed by Florida voters back in 2008, is now running as a pro-equality Democrat in this year's gubernatorial race.

Pam Bondi, the state attorney general working with Scott to defend the ban, has refused repeated calls to stop defending the ban, saying "I am just getting started"


Charlie Crist: Florida Governor and Attorney General Don't Have to Defend Gay Marriage Ban: VIDEO

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In an interview with the Miami Herald, Charlie Crist says Republican Governor Rick Scott and Attorney General Pam Bondi do not have to defend the state's ban on same-sex marriage in court and can make the choice to "make sure new and better things happen in Florida." 

Crist, who as Republican governor supported the ban when it was passed by Florida voters back in 2008, is now running as a pro-equality Democrat in this year's gubernatorial race. 

Watch the video, AFTER THE JUMP...

[via Good As You]

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Former GOP Florida Governor Charlie Crist Files Amicus Brief In Support Of Same-Sex Marriage

Former GOP governor of Florida and current Democratic gubernatorial candidate Charlie Crist previously apologized for a blatantly anti-gay political track record. Now he has made good on part of his promise to do everything he can to help achieve equal rights for same-sex couples and the LGBTQ community. He filed an amicus brief today in support of same-sex marriage in the Pareto v. Ruvin case set for a July hearing. 

CristEquality Florida reports:

"As former Governor, and as someone who previously supported this measure, Charlie Crist's words matter a great deal,” said Nadine Smith, CEO of Equality Florida. “He has taken the same journey the majority of Floridians have taken in realizing that this ban serves no purpose but to disparage and discriminate against gay couples and our children."

In the brief, Crist stated that as a former Governor and Attorney General who previously supported the ban, he is in a unique position to provide the court a perspective on why it is wrong, harmful to Florida and harmful to gay couples and children who are denied the protections only marriage provides. 

In his brief, Crist references his own evolution, in conjunction with the American public's:

“Thus, with the arc of history now, in fact, bending toward justice, this issue of marriage equality will almost certainly not even be an issue for the children and grandchildren of this State. But it is still the duty of those in the present to recognize that the legitimacy of government depends upon its willingness to fairly, transparently, and equitably administer the law. That goal is frustrated by denying an entire class of citizens equality in the institution of marriage simply because of who they are and whom they love.”

Crist's brief is an exciting addition to this case, following others filed by the Orlando and Miami Beach city councils. 


Tuesday Speed Read: Obama, James Costos, Colorado, Brunei, Charlie Crist, Phil Bryant

BY LISA KEEN / Keen News Service

Blue_obamaOBAMA PREPS EXECUTIVE ORDER:

The White House indicated Monday that President Obama has “directed his staff” to prepare an executive order to prohibit federal contractors from discriminating against employees on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. The White House official could not say how soon President Obama intends to sign the executive order. But the news comes during Pride Month, just two weeks before the White House hosts its annual reception in celebration of Pride Month, and just one day before President Obama is scheduled to be at an LGBT-related fundraiser for the Democratic National Committee in New York.

HIGH MAINTENANCE HOUSE GUESTS:

CostosThe openly gay U.S. ambassador to Spain and his partner hosted President Obama, the First Lady, and eldest daughter Malia at their house in Rancho Mirage, California, over the Father’s Day weekend, according to the Desert Sun. Ambassador James Costos and his partner, White House decorator Michael Smith, have a home in a gated community known as Thunderbird Heights. The President and First Lady headed back to Washington on Monday morning.

SENATE AGREES TO VOTE ON NOMINEES:

GaylesThe U.S. Senate voted 55 to 37 Monday to proceed to a vote on the confirmation of Darrin Gayles to the U.S. district court in Miami and, in a separate but identical vote, to proceed to a vote on the nomination of Staci Yandle to a district court seat in Illinois. If confirmed, Gayles will become the first openly gay African American to be appointed to a federal court bench. Yandle won’t be the first openly lesbian African American appointed to the bench but, if confirmed, she will be the first openly gay federal judge named to the bench in Illinois. The confirmation votes for both are  scheduled for 11 a.m. EDT Tuesday.

ColoradoCOLORADO JUDGE HEARS TWO CASES:

A state district court judge in Denver on Monday heard two consolidated lawsuits challenging the state’s ban on same-sex couples marrying. The Denver Post reported that Adams County District Court Judge Scott Crabtree expressed skepticism for the state’s contention that 15 federal and state judges before him erred in finding similar bans unconstitutional.

LETTERS PILE ON AGAINST BRUNEI:

KerryMore than 100 members of the U.S. House signed onto a letter to Secretary of State John Kerry last Thursday, urging that the U.S. halt negotiations with the government of Brunei on the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement. Noting Brunei’s recent adoption of draconian penalties for being gay, the letter argues that such agreements must insist that participating nations “adhere to internationally recognized civil, political, and human rights standards.” All seven openly LGBT members of the House signed on. Four national LGBT groups also sent a similar letter last week to President Obama regarding Brunei’s brutal laws against LGBT people.

CristEQUALITY FLORIDA AND HRC ENDORSE CRIST:

The statewide LGBT group Equality Florida and the Human Rights Campaign both made independent announcements last Thursday that they are endorsing Democratic candidate Charlie Crist for the Florida governor’s race in November. Crist has a primary in August but is expected to win the nomination easily against two little-known candidates.

BryantCENTRAL PARK GREETING:

A small group of protesters followed Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant around Central Park Saturday to express their unhappiness with the state’s new “religious freedom” law, which goes into effect July 1. The protesters, which included members of GetEQUAL Mississippi, staged a mostly silent protest, and some hosted their own “Big Gay Mississippi Welcome” dinner, according to the Hattiesburg American.

© copyright 2014 by Keen News Service. All rights reserved.


Charlie Crist Feels ‘Liberated’ Now that He Left the 'Racist, Anti-gay' GOP Behind: VIDEO

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In an interview last week with Fusion’s “America with John Ramos,” former Florida governor Charlie Crist said he left the Republican Party because of its racist and anti-gay positions and feels ‘liberated’ now that he’s a Democrat.

Said Crist of the GOP:

“They’re perceived now as being anti-women, anti-immigrant, anti-minority, anti-gay, anti-education, anti-environment. I just wasn’t comfortable being honest with myself and my core beliefs. I couldn’t stay.” 

When pressed by Ramos about his political motivations for leaving the party (switching to independent after losing the Republican primary for U.S. Senate to Marco Rubio in 2010), Crist reiterated that he ultimately left because the party didn’t represent his core beliefs:

"I left the Republican Party because Republican leadership went off the cliff. They are so far right now they won’t cooperate with the president on anything… I couldn’t be consistent with myself and my core beliefs and stay with a party that was so unfriendly to the African American president. I’ll just go there."

Check out the interview, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Former FL State Rep Ana Rivas Logan Leaving Republican Party Over Its ‘Extremist’ Positions

Another former Florida GOP lawmaker is switching to the Democratic Party.

Rep. Ana Rivas Logan, like former Gov. Charlie Crist, says she is leaving the GOP because the party has become radicalized by the far right-wing. The Huffington Post reports:

Ana Rivas Logan"The GOP of today is not the party I joined; it's not the party of my parents," Rivas Logan said in a statement. "It's a party that has been radicalized and held hostage by a group of extremists. It's a party that attacks women and minorities -- and one that asked me, and my former Hispanic Republican colleagues in the Florida legislature, to turn on their own people by supporting extreme anti-immigrant policies. It's a party I was no longer proud to be a part of."

Rivas Logan served on the Miami-Dade County school board before heading to Tallahassee in 2010. She lost a nasty re-election primary in 2012 after redistricting shuffled her into the same district as another incumbent Republican. Miami-Dade GOP chair Nelson Diaz suggested her switch was motivated by a desire to regain office.

Crist tweeted his support for Rivas Logan's switch, "Bienvenida @anarivaslogan to the Democratic Party! Glad you are here my friend."


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