House approves PRIDE Act to give gay couples refunds on back taxes

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: The PRIDE Act would make gay couples eligible for a tax refund if they married before DOMA was struck down. (Washington Blade file photo by Michael Key)

The U.S. House approved — with zero opposition — legislation that would allow same-sex couples to obtain an estimated $67 million in tax refunds if they married before the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the Defense of Marriage Act in 2013.

The legislation, known as the PRIDE Act, or the Promoting Respect for Individuals’ Dignity and Equality Act, was introduced by Reps. Judy Chu (D-Calif.) and Andy Levin (D-Mich.).

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Parents of transgender kids share hardship stories on Capitol Hill

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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The parents of transgender children met on Capitol Hill Wednesday to share stories about hardships their families have encountered, including anti-trans policies of the Trump administration.

The parents gathered for a one-hour meeting at the Cannon House Office Building for a public meeting hosted by Rep. Joseph Kennedy III (D-Mass.), chair of the Transgender Equality Task Force. The meeting followed a two-day summit of the Parents for Transgender Equality National Council at the Human Rights Campaign building in D.C.

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Pompeo grilled over anti-LGBTQ statements during confirmation hearing

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: The confirmation hearing on CIA Director Mike Pompeo‘s nomination to become the next secretary of state took place before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on April 12, 2018. Washington Blade by Michael Key.

Mike Pompeo on Thursday during his confirmation hearing to become the next secretary of state faced questions about his previous anti-LGBTQ statements.

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Madaleno mocks Democratic opponent at Victory Fund brunch

By : Michael K. Lavers OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: Maryland state Sen. Rich Madaleno speaks at the LGBTQ Victory Fund’s annual National Champagne Brunch in D.C. on April 8, 2018. (D-Montgomery County)

Maryland state Sen. Rich Madaleno (D-Montgomery County) on Sunday at the LGBTQ Victory Fund’s National Champagne Brunch in D.C. mocked a Democratic opponent who said he “prances around Annapolis.”

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Pentagon celebrates Pride with LGBT service members

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL GAY MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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The U.S. military has entered a new era under the Trump administration as many wonder if the LGBT progress after “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” repeal will remain in place, but one thing that hasn’t changed is the annual reception at the Pentagon recognizing Pride.

The event — coordinated by DOD Pride, the Pentagon affinity group for LGBT service members and civilians — took place on Monday as it has each year after repeal of the military’s gay ban, and now after the rule change allowing transgender people to serve in the armed forces.

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LGBT Equality Caucus doubles its membership

By : Chris Johnson of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National Gay Media Association
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The congressional caucus dedicated to LGBT issues has nearly doubled its membership, rebounding after experiencing attrition in recent years as a result of shifting to dues-based membership.

The LGBT Equality Caucus announced on Tuesday it has started the 115th Congress with 102 members, which is nearly double the roster of 53 members at the start of the last Congress.

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