Bernard Friedman http://michiganradio.org en Michigan's same-sex marriage trial has political implications for state's GOP http://michiganradio.org/post/michigans-same-sex-marriage-trial-has-political-implications-states-gop <p>We are one week, halfway through, the <a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/lesbian-couples-challenge-michigans-ban-same-sex-marriage-starts-tomorrow">trial in federal court in Detroit</a> centering on the <a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/meet-couple-challenging-michigans-gay-marriage-ban">challenge </a>to Michigan’s constitutional ban on same-sex marriage. The arguments are supposed to go on for another week, and then we’ll wait for the judge’s decision. But the case’s mere existence, the fact that it’s occurring, is having an effect on the political landscape in Michigan.</p><p>And, it should be noted that these hearings are not taking place within a vacuum. Just this week we saw two more gay marriage rulings. Texas’ ban on<a href="http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/judge-strikes-down-texas-gay-marriage-ban-paving-way-for-shift-in-conservative-bastion/2014/02/26/201d6cd0-9f1f-11e3-9ba6-800d1192d08b_story.html"> same-sex marriage was struck down</a> and Kentucky was <a href="http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2014/02/27/283508733/federal-judge-rules-kentucky-must-recognize-gay-marriages">ordered to recognize same-sex marriages</a> performed in other states.</p><p>There is also another <a href="http://www.mlive.com/lansing-news/index.ssf/2014/02/gov_rick_snyder_asks_federal_j.html">federal case underway</a> here in Michigan that is challenging the state’s refusal to allow live-in partner benefits for public employees. It’s the mechanism that was created to allow same-sex couples to use their benefits to cover partners and children who would otherwise be denied coverage under Michigan’s marriage amendment, approved by voters in a statewide election 10 years ago. Fri, 28 Feb 2014 22:43:59 +0000 Zoe Clark & Rick Pluta 16667 at http://michiganradio.org Michigan's same-sex marriage trial has political implications for state's GOP Hype surrounding same-sex marriage hearing lacked a reality check http://michiganradio.org/post/hype-surrounding-same-sex-marriage-hearing-lacked-reality-check <p>Prospective brides and grooms in same-sex relationships could not be blamed for feeling jilted this week – not by their partners, but by the Eastern U.S. District Court in Detroit.</p><p>They expected this would be their day - that <a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/meet-bernard-friedman-federal-judge-who-decided-hear-challenge-gay-marriage-ban">Judge Bernard Friedman</a> would strike down Michigan’s <a href="http://michiganradio.org/term/same-sex-marriage">ban on same-sex marriage</a>, and they would be among the first gay and lesbian couples in Michigan to tie the knot.</p><p>Instead, disappointment. Anger. Tears, in some cases. Big expectations dashed because Judge Friedman did not uphold or strike down the amendment, which was approved by Michigan voters in 2004 by a pretty commanding majority. Fri, 18 Oct 2013 17:43:43 +0000 Rick Pluta & Zoe Clark 14901 at http://michiganradio.org Hype surrounding same-sex marriage hearing lacked a reality check Meet the couple challenging Michigan's gay marriage ban http://michiganradio.org/post/meet-couple-challenging-michigans-gay-marriage-ban <p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">April </span>DeBoer<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> and Jayne </span>Rowse<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> wanted to jointly adopt their children.</span></p><p>In the years that they’ve lived together, Rowse has adopted two children, and DeBoer adopted one, splitting the responsibilities of parenthood together. But a state ban on same-sex joint adoptions prohibited them from officially adopting their children together.</p><p>So in January 2012, DeBoer and Rowse filed a lawsuit against the state, arguing that preventing such adoptions violated rights of their children.</p><p>But U.S. District Judge Bernard Friedman told the couple to take their complaint further — challenge the state’s constitutional ban on gay marriage.</p><p> Fri, 18 Oct 2013 14:10:03 +0000 Lester Graham 14883 at http://michiganradio.org Meet the couple challenging Michigan's gay marriage ban In this morning's news: Challenge to gay marriage ban, changing public defense, bankruptcy in Flint http://michiganradio.org/post/mornings-news-challenge-gay-marriage-ban-changing-public-defense-bankruptcy-flint <p><strong>Federal judge will hear challenge to gay marriage ban</strong></p><p>A federal judge is allowing a legal challenge to Michigan adoption laws and its ban on same-sex marriage to move forward.<a href="http://www.michiganradio.org/post/meet-bernard-friedman-federal-judge-who-decided-hear-challenge-gay-marriage-ban"> Judge Bernard Friedman</a> says the decision to strike down DOMA last week left unanswered questions that could be addressed by this case. April DeBoer and Jayne Rowse are raising three children together; they say Michigan law violates the equal protection rights of their children. The judge called a July 10th hearing to chart the next steps in the case.</p><p><strong>Legislation to improve legal defense for indigent Michiganders </strong></p><p>Governor Rick Snyder signed legislation yesterday that will make changes to the state’s public defense system. The bill will create a commission to set statewide standards to ensure effective legal representation for poor defendants. The commission will also monitor counties to make sure each one is meeting those standards.</p><p><strong>Flint EM warns possibility of bankruptcy</strong></p><p>Flint's Emergency Manager, Ed Kurtz, warns the city could run out of money if it's forced to pay retirees full health benefits. A federal judge recently ruled Flint has to give retired workers the benefits they were promised. Kurtz says the decision hurts retirees more than it helps and that bankruptcy would mean much bigger cuts for retirees and current workers.</p><p> Tue, 02 Jul 2013 11:16:22 +0000 Michigan Radio Newsroom 13334 at http://michiganradio.org In this morning's news: Challenge to gay marriage ban, changing public defense, bankruptcy in Flint