Confirmation of Serbia’s first gay Prime Minister thrown into doubt

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BELGRADE, Serbia (AP) – Serbia’s ruling conservatives said June 19 if Prime Minister-designate Ana Brnabic doesn’t get enough votes to be confirmed by parliament as the first openly gay person to head the country’s government, an early general election will be held.

Brnabic, nominated last week by Serbian Present Aleksandar Vucic, could also become the conservative nation’s first female prime minister if she’s selected. But some of Vucic’s coalition partners said they will vote against her because of her sexual orientation.

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Malta prime minister pledging to introduce same-sex marriage law

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VALLETTA, Malta (AP) – Joseph Muscat, who was sworn in June 5 for a second term as Malta’s prime minister, is pledging to introduce a same-sex marriage law when Parliament convenes in the next few weeks.

Official results showed his Labour Party won 55 percent of the vote June 3 to the opposition National Force coalition’s 44 percent, the same margin as his first victory in 2013. The National Force is comprised of the Nationalist Party and the Democratic Party.

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Same-sex couples sue over Tennessee ‘natural meaning’ law

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Four married lesbian couples expecting children through artificial insemination filed a lawsuit May 8 over concerns that a new Tennessee statute requiring use of the “natural and ordinary meaning” of words in state law could strip them of their rights as parents.

Less than a week after Gov. Bill Haslam signed the legislation, the couples sued the Republican governor, the state of Tennessee and the state Department of Health and its commissioner, John Dreyzehner, in Davidson County Chancery Court.

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Alabama Legislature to debate protections for religious adoption agencies

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MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP)- Lawmakers are attempting to add Alabama to the list of states that protect faith-based adoption organizations that refuse to place children with gay parents or in certain other households.

The House of Representatives is scheduled to vote on the bill Thursday.

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Bid to extend protections to Montana LGBTQs stirs emotions

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HELENA, Mont. (AP)- Advocates launched a new bid Wednesday to extend non-discrimination protections for LGBTQ people across Montana – undeterred by a long string of prior legislative defeats.

Proponents this time argue that extending protections would be good for Montana’s business climate.

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South Dakota to consider transgender locker room bill

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PIERRE, S.D. (AP)- South Dakota lawmakers will consider restricting which locker rooms transgender students can use, reigniting a bitter fight from last year over what school facilities are open to transgender students.

The bill, introduced Wednesday by two Republican lawmakers, would require public school students to use the locker rooms, shower rooms and changing facilities that match their sex at birth. It comes after Republican Gov. Dennis Daugaard vetoed a broader bill last year that also applied to bathrooms. His chief of staff, Tony Venhuizen, said Wednesday that Daugaard intends to veto a bill that is “substantially the same” as last year’s measure.

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NC leaders ask court for delay in LGBTQ law appeal

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RALEIGH (AP) — North Carolina’s Republican leaders say a federal appeals court should wait for a U.S. Supreme Court case to be resolved before weighing in on a law limiting protections for LGBT people.

Lawyers for legislative leaders and Gov. Pat McCrory filed a motion Nov. 9 asking the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals to delay the case on House Bill 2 until the Supreme Court decides a Virginia case concerning transgender restroom access.

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LGBTQ law, hurricane jostle N. Carolina governor race

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Greensboro, N.C. (AP) — Republican Gov. Pat McCrory has been unable to quash the firestorm over his signing of a law limiting protections for LGBTQ people, while trying to focus his re-election bid on North Carolina’s economy, taxes, teacher pay and his recent response to historic flooding.

That legislation has reinforced this election as a referendum on North Carolina’s conservative shift under McCrory and the Republican-led legislature. The gubernatorial contest is one of the nation’s most competitive, with several polls showing McCrory and Democratic Attorney General Roy Cooper in a statistical tie.

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Transgender man suing over Indiana law blocking name change

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INDIANAPOLIS (AP) – A transgender man granted asylum by the U.S. last year is challenging an Indiana law that prevents him from changing his first name to a male name that matches his gender identity.

The 31-year-old, who was brought to Indiana from Mexico illegally by his parents at age six, contends in his federal lawsuit that Indiana’s law requiring anyone seeking a name-change to provide proof of U.S. citizenship is unconstitutional and essentially forces him to “out” himself as transgender whenever he must display his driver’s license.

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Duke Energy CEO says utility avoiding North Carolina LGBT law fight

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CARY, N.C. (AP) — Duke Energy Corp. aims to stay out of the fight over North Carolina’s law limiting protections for LGBT people, the company’s CEO said, noting the company is heavily regulated by the state.

“I’m in a regulated industry with responsibility for keeping the lights on, and my focus is there and attracting a workforce that makes us better, and that’s a diverse workforce,” CEO Lynn Good told The Associated Press.

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Citizen Group drops lawsuit over North Carolina restroom law

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RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – A citizens group has dropped a lawsuit defending a North Carolina law governing transgender restroom access.

North Carolinians for Privacy filed a notice Aug. 31 that they were voluntarily dismissing their case, one of several pending in federal court.

The move will streamline the knot of litigation over the law. The state’s Republican leaders are continuing to defend the law in two other cases before the same judge, and trial is scheduled for November.

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Gov. Christie: NBA move of All-Star game ‘grandstanding’

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TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie says the NBA’s decision to move its All-Star Game from Charlotte because of a law limiting anti-discrimination protections for LGBT people was “grandstanding.”

Christie made the remarks while co-hosting the WFAN “Boomer and Carton” morning radio show Aug. 5.

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