Amtrak: No evidence injured gay passenger was in fight

By : wire report
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RENO, Nev. (AP) — The family of a 22-year-old train passenger found severely injured next to railroad tracks in Truckee, California, suspects he may have been the victim of a hate crime, but Amtrak said Saturday that investigators have found no evidence of foul play.

Aaron Salazar’s family believes the Portland State University student, who is gay, was attacked and didn’t jump from the westbound train, the Reno Gazette Journal report ed.

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Trump’s gay nominee Ric Grenell confirmed as ambassador to Germany

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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The U.S. Senate confirmed Richard Grenell on Thursday as U.S. ambassador to Germany, making him the most high-profile openly gay appointee in the Trump administration.

Grenell — who has faced Democratic opposition for months over mean tweets he made about the appearance of women and other comments downplaying the significance of Russia’s influence in the 2016 election — was confirmed by a largely party line vote of 56-42.

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Anti-LGBTQ Trump judicial nominee Kyle Duncan confirmed to Fifth Circuit

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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The U.S. Senate has confirmed to the federal bench a Trump judicial nominee who made a major component of his career as a lawyer attempts to block LGBTQ rights, including same-sex marriage and transgender student Gavin Grimm’s access to the high school boys’ room,

Kyle Duncan, a partner at the D.C.-based Schaerr Duncan LLP, was confirmed Tuesday to a seat on the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals — which has jurisdiction over Texas, Louisiana and Mississippi — by a party-line vote of 50-47.

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Sen. Gillibrand: Defeat Trump in 2020 to pass Equality Act

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) called Saturday night for the defeat of President Trump in Election 2020 and a change of Congress to enact long-sought after federal non-discrimination protections for LGBT people.

Gillibrand, a possible Democratic contender in 2020, made the remarks Saturday at the 2018 HRC Greater New York Gala, encouraging attendees to join efforts to make change in the mid-term election and the presidential election in 2020.

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White House: Anti-trans judicial nomination ‘not moving forward’

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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A judicial nomination by President Trump who had called transgender kids “Satan’s plan” and proudly said the Baptist Church discriminates against gays won’t move forward the Senate, the White House said Wednesday.

The news comes after Sen. Charles Grassley (R-Iowa), top Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee, urged Trump to rethink the nominee as well as that of Brett Talley, a judicial pick who had never tried a case. A White House official confirmed to the Washington Blade “both Talley and Mateer will not be moving forward.”

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DeVos still won’t say federal law bars anti-LGBT discrimination

By : Chris Johnson of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National Gay Media Association
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Weeks after facing criticism for refusing to speak out in congressional testimony against anti-LGBT discrimination in charter schools, Education Secretary Betsy DeVos still won’t say federal law prohibits them from discriminating against LGBT students.

DeVos on Tuesday referred generally to rules under federal law in a testy exchange on whether she’d speak out against anti-LGBT discrimination in charter schools with Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), who said the statute in this area is “somewhat foggy.”

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