Attempt To Ban Gay Marriage In Minnesota Constitution Fails

From The New Civil Rights Movement:  http://thenewcivilrightsmovement.com/breaking-attempt-to-ban-gay-marriage-in-minnesota-constitution-fails/politics/2012/11/07/53250

by David Badash
on November 7, 2012

An attempt to ban same-sex marriage in Minnesota’s constitution has failed. “Shall the Minnesota Constitution be amended to provide that only a union of one man and one woman shall be valid or recognized as a marriage in Minnesota?,” voters are asked, and they answered, “no.”

With 87.5% reporting, the amendment failed by a 51% to 47% margin.

“Today Minnesotans affirmed that marriage matters for their gay and lesbian neighbors and friends, as for all of us, and refused to slam the door on marriage in the state constitution,” said Thalia Zepatos, director of public engagement at Freedom to Marry and a key adviser to Minnesotans United for All Families. “Now loving and committed couples in Minnesota will be able to work to achieve their dream of crossing the threshold, respected equally under the law.”

In a campaign over the last year and a half, Minnesotans United built a coalition of 700 partner organizations and raised more than $13 million from over 67,000 donors, had 330,000 one-on-one conversations, and made more than two million phone calls, making it the largest ballot campaign in state history. It collaborated with faith leaders across the state to reach voters, enlisting opposition to the amendment from five of the six Lutheran synods in the state.

“Minnesotans United worked doggedly day and night to make the case to voters in heartfelt and personal stories and conversations. They recruited thousands of volunteers for ‘get out the vote’ efforts and powerfully explained why marriage matters over the airwaves, online, and in one-on-one conversations,” Zepatos added. “Non-gay people joined gay people across the states to stand up for freedom and fairness, and move Minnesota closer to the freedom to marry for all.”

Continue reading at:   http://thenewcivilrightsmovement.com/breaking-attempt-to-ban-gay-marriage-in-minnesota-constitution-fails/politics/2012/11/07/53250

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NOW Cheers Obama-Biden Win Delivered by Women Voters, Calls for Unconditional End to War on Women

NOW Press Release:

November 7, 2012

Statement of NOW President Terry O’Neill

November 6, 2012

NOW applauds women voters for re-electing President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden, defeating some of the most extreme anti-woman tea party candidates running for the Senate, and passing marriage equality measures in Maine and Maryland.

In a truly pivotal election, women voters rejected the Romney-Ryan war on women and chose moving forward over taking a giant step backward. Women demonstrated that civil rights are for everyone, including same-sex couples, and that reproductive rights are hardly a diversion from the dominant issues of jobs and the deficit — they are a central issue in our lives, part of our basic health care and an essential aspect of our economic well-being.

This election season, NOW’s grassroots leaders and supporters took to the front lines to ensure that voters across the country knew exactly what was at stake. We staffed phone banks, knocked on doors, organized events and talked with our friends, neighbors, co-workers and family. In the days leading up to Nov. 6, I met with voters in Virginia, Wisconsin, New York, Connecticut, Florida and Ohio — voters who were concerned that decades of progress could be reversed.

As we celebrate our victories in these elections, we call for an immediate and unconditional end to the war on women that has been waged by right-wing extremists for too long now.  We call on Congress and the White House to take action immediately to achieve real equality for women. Women’s access to the full range of reproductive health services — including abortion and birth control — must not be subject to politicians’ whims or ideologies. We urge enactment and full enforcement of policies to close the gender wage gap. Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid must be strengthened, not cut. The growing inequality of income and wealth, which has had a devastating impact on women, especially women of color, must be reversed.

In the end, well-informed voters were not fooled by the endless flip-flops, evasions and distortions perpetrated by Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan. A majority of voters recognized that the GOP ticket was more interested in tax cuts for the wealthy and turning back the clock on our rights than creating jobs for ordinary women and men.

NOW looks forward to working with President Obama, Vice President Biden and the new Congress in making tangible, identifiable progress in achieving women’s rights and equality for all in the United States of America.

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We Take Care Of Our Own

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C-SPAN: President-Elect Barack Obama Victory Speech (Full Video)

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In Maine and Maryland, Victories at the Ballot Box for Same-Sex Marriage

Washington and Minnesota are still in the air as I post this…

From The New York Times:   http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/07/us/politics/same-sex-marriage-voting-election.html

By
Published: November 7, 2012

Voters in Maine and Maryland approved same-sex marriageon an election night that jubilant gay rights advocates called a historic turning point, the first time that marriage for gay men and lesbians has been approved at the ballot box.

While six states and the District of Columbia have legalized same-sex marriage through court decisions or legislative decisions, voters had rejected it more than 30 times in a row.

Results for the other two states voting on same-sex marriage, Minnesota and Washington, were still coming in late Tuesday, but rights groups said that the victories in two states and possibly more were an important sign that public opinion was shifting in their direction.

“We have made history for marriage equality by winning our first victory at the ballot box,” said Chad Griffin, the president of the Human Rights Campaign, which raised millions of dollars for the races in the four states.

Matt McTighe, the campaign manager for Mainers United for Marriage, said, “A lot of families in Maine just became more stable and secure.”

At a victory party in Baltimore, supporters of Maryland’s referendum danced and cheered as balloons filled the air. “I’m so elated right now,” said Mary Bruce Leigh, 32. “This is the civil rights issue of our time, and we have succeeded in Maryland.”

Continue reading at:  http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/07/us/politics/same-sex-marriage-voting-election.html

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Fiery consumer advocate Elizabeth Warren beats Scott Brown in Massachusetts Senate race

From Boston.com:  http://www.boston.com/metrodesk/2012/11/06/polls-close-mass-suspense-builds-race-for-senate/sBRjd1kjA1q5fiiQRA2xcL/story.html

By Martin Finucane, Stephanie Ebbert and Mark Arsenault,
11/07/2012

Democrat Elizabeth Warren, the Harvard Law professor who promised to battle for a struggling middle class, defeated incumbent Republican Scott Brown tonight in the Massachusetts Senate race, despite Brown’s attempts to paint himself as a one of a dying breed, a moderate New England Republican.

The victory by Warren, who made history as the first woman elected to serve as a US senator from Massachusetts, marked a comeback by the state’s Democrats after Brown’s bruising 2010 upset win in a special election to fill the seat left vacant by liberal lion Edward M. Kennedy.

In a hard-fought race that drew national attention, the two candidates had crisscrossed the state, aired tough TV ads, and tangled in three heated debates, while spending some $70 million between them.

Complete article at:  http://www.boston.com/metrodesk/2012/11/06/polls-close-mass-suspense-builds-race-for-senate/sBRjd1kjA1q5fiiQRA2xcL/story.html

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Ari Fleischer: Republican Party will never embrace LGBT and women’s rights

Which is why the Republican Party and everything it stands for needs to wind up on the dung heap of history.

From Raw Story:  http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2012/11/07/ari-fleischer-republican-party-will-never-embrace-lgbt-and-womens-rights/

By David Edwards
Wednesday, November 7, 2012

After a stinging election night defeat, President George W. Bush’s former White House secretary still says that the Republican Party will never support LGBT rights and reproductive rights for women.

“The big issue that Republicans are going to have to wrestle with is the Hispanic issue,” Ari Fleischer explained after President Barack Obama’s defeat of GOP hopeful Mitt Romney made it clear that the country was more liberal than he had expected.

“It’s not the social issues,” he insisted. “You’re not going to make the party pro-choice and pro-gay rights and think you’ve made the Republican party the party that’s the popular party. We have a party like that. It’s the Democratic Party.”

Complete Story at:  http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2012/11/07/ari-fleischer-republican-party-will-never-embrace-lgbt-and-womens-rights/

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Alan Grayson to rejoin U.S. House

From Raw Story:  http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2012/11/06/alan-grayson-to-rejoin-u-s-house/

By Eric W. Dolan
Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Former Rep. Alan Grayson (D-FL) will return to Congress after defeating Republican candidate Todd Long.

“I’m going to do my best when it comes to jobs, when it comes to housing, when it comes to education [and] when it comes to human needs,” Grayson told his supporters, according to the Orlando Sentinel.

Complete article at:  http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2012/11/06/alan-grayson-to-rejoin-u-s-house/

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Tammy Baldwin wins in Wisconsin as voters elect first openly gay senator

From The Guardian UK:  http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/nov/07/wisconsin-senate-results-tammy-baldwin

Baldwin narrowly defeats Tommy Thompson in victory that assumes hugely symbolic importance for gay community in US

in Madison, Wisconsin
guardian.co.uk, Wednesday 7 November 2012

Voters in Wisconsin broke through one of the last barriers in public life on Tuesday to elect the first openly gay member of the US Senate.

Tammy Baldwin, 50, a liberal Democrat from the college town of Madison, narrowly defeated Tommy Thompson, 70, in a nasty, divisive and expensive – $65m – Senate race.

Her victory helped Democrats keep control of the Senate.

It also assumes huge symbolic importance for the lesbian and gay community and for the left in Wisconsin, which had been beaten down in a series of battles with the state’s Republican governor.

“Tonight we have won a huge victory for Wisconsin,” Baldwin said as the ballroom erupted in cheers and the clattering of cowbells.

Baldwin in her victory speech said she would be a champion for the middle class.

“I am well aware that I will have the honour to be Wisconsin‘s first woman US senator,” Baldwin before she was drowned out by a roar from the crowd.

“And I am well aware that I will be the first openly gay member of the United States Senate, but I didn’t run to make history. I ran to make a difference.

Continue reading at:  http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/nov/07/wisconsin-senate-results-tammy-baldwin

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