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Republicans Pivot from Gay
Marriage to Religious Liberty
(CNN) The Supreme Court's decision Friday to legalize
same-sex marriage everywhere offered the GOP a way out of a
debate that national polls show has turned into a loser for their
candidates. But some Republican presidential contenders are
ready for another cultural and civil rights battle --- this time
over religious liberty.
On Sunday, several 2016 hopefuls sought to court
evangelical Christians who make up much of the base
Republicans must win over to advance out of the primary
election, signaling that they're willing to deal with the
accusations of discrimination that states like Indiana have
faced in order to protect religious rights.
Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee channeled Martin
Luther King, Jr. calling for non-violent resistance to the
Texas Sen. Ted Cruz went even further in the wake of the
ruling, telling an Iowa crowd that "the last 24 hours at the
United States Supreme Court were among the darkest hours
of our nation."
And Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal predicted the fight over
religious liberty would persist through the 2016 election.
"Here's where the next fight's going: I think the left is now
going to go after our First Amendment rights," Jindal said on
NBC's "Meet the Press."
Florida Sen. Marco Rubio said Christian photographers
shouldn't be punished for refusing to shoot a same-sex
And former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum said at the
time he stands for "religious liberty and real tolerance."
The issue -- similar to immigration -- is a conundrum for
Republicans. Their primary electorate opposes same-sex
marriage, while national polls show the general public is much
more supportive of allowing gay and lesbian couples to wed.
The Supreme Court's ruling has evoked fears that religious
rights are poised to be trampled if a liberal president succeeds
President Barack Obama and appoints more Supreme Court
US Same-Sex Marriage Ruling
Likely To Impact Other Countries
(AP) The landmark U.S. Supreme Court ruling in favor of
same-sex marriages has no legal force outside the United
States, but gay rights activists in many parts of the world
believe the court ruling will help their cause.
In the Philippines, activists seeking to win legal recognition
for same-sex marriages believe the U.S. ruling will be useful,
particularly since the country's legal setup is largely based on
the U.S. system, said Sylvia Estrada Claudio, a gender rights
advocate and professor at the University of the Philippines.
In Australia, where parliament may vote on a same-sex
marriage law later this year despite opposition from Prime
Minister Tony Abbott, legislators who back the measure
said the U.S. ruling leaves Australia alone among developed,
English-speaking nations in its refusal to legalize marriages
between same sex couples.
The issue is different in India, where activists believe
the U.S. ruling may make Indian judges and legislators feel
uncomfortably isolated by the 2013 Indian Supreme Court
decision to reinstate a colonial-era law making homosexuality
At gay pride parades in Dublin, Paris and other cities
Saturday, the U.S. ruling was hailed by many as a watershed.
The U.S. ruling boosted street celebrations Saturday in
Dublin, where Ireland mounted the biggest gay rights parade
in the country's history.
In the deeply conservative Arab world, where
homosexuality is regarded as a crime in many countries, some
clerics warned that the U.S. ruling would lead to the collapse
In Jordan, where homosexuality is not illegal but is
considered taboo, one member of the small gay community
said the U.S. ruling is "a victory for human rights in general
and gives everyone hope."
Marriage equality is also not part of the conversation in
many parts of Africa, where more than two-thirds of the
countries treat homosexuality as a crime.
Nigeria Urged to Repeal Its Anti-
Gay Law by Rights Group
(AP) A new report says Nigeria's draconian law against
gays has led to mob attacks, police torture, evictions, public
whippings and health risks, and asks the country's new
president to repeal the legislation.
The Same Sex Marriage Prohibition Act became law 18
months ago prescribing up to 14 years' jail and also making it
a crime to not report a known homosexual.
The law is "the constitutionalization of hate and hate
crimes against LGBTI individuals," author Bisi Alimi writes
in the report published Monday by the PEN American Center
and the New York-based Leitner Center for International Law
It calls for President Muhammadu Buhari to end the
legalized discrimination of lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans-
gender and intersex minorities, charging it denies freedom of
expression and other constitutional rights.
y Compiled by
High Colombian Official Urges
Courts to OK Same-Sex Marriage
(AP) A top Cabinet minister in Colombia is urging
the South American country's courts to legalize same-
sex marriage and support the right of such couples to
Interior Minister Juan Fernando Cristo noted Friday's
decision by the U.S. Supreme Court that enshrined the
right of gays and lesbians to wed in the United States.
In Cristo's words, "Equality is unstoppable and
equality also will come to Colombia."
The minister's appeal to the courts on Sunday was his
own view and he was not speaking for President Juan
Manuel Santos' administration. Colombia's congress,
like much of the population, is very conservative and
it is unlikely legislation allowing same-sex marriages
would ever be adopted by lawmakers.
Cristo spoke as thousands from Colombia's LGBT
community staged a gay price march in the capital.
Photo: mininterior.gov.co .
Mike Huckabee. CNN.
Photo: Michael Dumlao. CNN.
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