Romania marriage referendum fails because of low voter turnout

By : Michael K. Lavers OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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A referendum on whether to define marriage as between a man and a woman in the Romanian constitution’s definition of family has failed.

The Associated Press and other media outlets cited election officials who said turnout was below the 30 percent that was required to make the referendum valid.

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Romania’s top court approves marriage referendum

By : Michael K. Lavers OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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Romania’s top on Monday by a 7-2 vote margin approved a proposed referendum on whether to define marriage as between a man and a woman.

Activists in the European country sharply criticized the decision.

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Biden urged to run in 2020 at Human Rights Campaign dinner

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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Attendees at the annual Human Rights Campaign national dinner Saturday night urged Joseph Biden to challenge President Trump in 2020 amid speculation the former vice president is mulling a run for the White House.

As Biden approached the podium at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center, he was greeted with calls of “Run, Joe, Run!” and “2020!” In response, Biden didn’t convey any thoughts about the upcoming presidential election, but thanked the audience and proceeded with his remarks.

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Romania’s top court OKs residency rights for same-sex couple

By : Wire Report
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BUCHAREST, Romania (AP) | Romania’s top court has ruled that a gay Romanian-American couple is entitled to the same residency rights as other married couples in the European Union.

The Constitutional Court ruling issued July 18 followed a decision last month by the European Court of Justice in the case of Romanian Adrian Coman and his American husband, Claibourn Robert Hamilton. The men wanted their marriage legally recognized in Romania.

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Religious protests against gay films show divide in Romania

By : wire report
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BUCHAREST, Romania (AP) — Religious protesters in Romania have disrupted the screenings of two movies featuring gay themes, saying they violate traditional values. In response, a new screening of the Cannes award-winning movie “120 Beats Per Minute” is going to be held Tuesday in Bucharest.

The dispute illustrates Romania’s divided views about homosexuality, which remains a difficult topic in the eastern European Union member where more than 85 percent of its people belong to Christian Orthodox churches. Homosexuality was only decriminalized when Romania prepared to join the EU in 2002.

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Kim Davis fights same-sex marriage in Romania

By : MICHAEL K. LAVERS of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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A Kentucky county clerk who went to jail for refusing to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples is currently in Romania.

The Liberty Counsel on Tuesday in a press release said Kim Davis and Harry Mihet, who is the anti-LGBT legal group’s vice president of legal affairs and its chief litigation counsel, are “visiting Romania this week to discuss the impact of same-sex ‘marriage’ on religious liberty and freedom of conscience.”

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Romanians celebrate LGBTQ Pride amid moves to limit rights

By : Wire Report
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BUCHAREST, Romania (AP) – Some 1,000 people joined an LGBTQ Pride march in the Romanian capital of Bucharest May 20, demanding greater rights amid government moves they say will curtail their rights.

Some 30 ambassadors expressed support for the march and for protecting the rights of the LGBTQ community and U.S. Ambassador Hans G. Klemm was among those taking part, despite the pouring rain.

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Romania to consult with European court over same-sex case

By : Wire Report
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BUCHAREST, Romania (AP) – Romania’s constitutional court said Nov. 29 it would consult with a European court regarding the case of a same-sex couple who want their marriage abroad to be legally recognized in Romania.

Court president Valer Dorneanu said he was seeking information from the European Court of Justice to see how other EU countries where same-sex marriages are not legal handled similar cases. The court set the next hearing for March 30.

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Romanian court again postpones ruling on same-sex marriage

By : Wire Report
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BUCHAREST, Romania (AP) – Romania’s Constitutional Court again postponed ruling on a petition to recognize the same-sex marriage of a U.S. citizen and a Romanian man.

Romania currently does not recognize same-sex marriages or relationships amid opposition from the conservative Romanian Orthodox Church.

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Fishing From the Other Side of the Boat

By : Michael Kilgore
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St. Petersburg – Stephen Graumlich, introducing The Rev. Elder Dr. Nancy L. Wilson, World Moderator of the Metropolitan Community Churches, to a full house at the 4TH Annual Pride Celebration at The Cathedral Church of St. Peter’s paused a moment. He reflected upon one sentence she shared with him 30 years ago, “We have to learn to fish out of the other side of the boat.”

At the time Graumlich was struggling to find a place where, as a gay man, he could reclaim his spiritual roots. And Wilson was a minister in a fledgling MCC church. Graumlich finally found his home in an inclusive Episcopalian church. Wilson now heads a church with 300 congregations in 37 countries. Her message of inclusion remains the same.

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