U.S. district judges struck down same-sex marriage bans as unconstitutional in Arkansas and Mississippi on Tuesday, overturning measures voters had overwhelmingly approved in both socially conservative Southern states.
The two judges, Kristine Baker in Little Rock, Arkansas, and Carlton Reeves in Jackson, Mississippi, ruled that the prohibitions against gay matrimony in their states denied guarantees of equal protection under the law for same-sex couples.
The back-to-back decisions were the latest in a flurry of recent court rulings striking down statutes and state constitutional amendments across the United States defining marriage as a union exclusively between a man and a woman.
“These laws impose unconstitutional classifications on the basis of gender in violation of the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution,” Baker wrote in her decision.
Both judges put their rulings on hold for the time being, meaning legal recognition of marriage for gay and lesbian couples was not imminent in either state.
Reeves stayed his ruling for two weeks to allow Mississippi officials time to bring an appeal.
(Reporting by By Steve Barnes and Emily Le Coz; Additional reporting by Jon Herskovitz in Austin, Texas; Writing by Jonathan Kaminsky; Editing by Steve Gorman and Paul Tait)
Foreign diplomats preparing for the worst — another Trump win in 2020: ‘People don’t want to be stupid twice’
According to a report from Politico, foreign diplomats are not so sure Donald Trump will be beaten in the 2020 election and are making contingency plans for how they will deal with him should he be re-elected.
The report notes that the win by the New York businessman in 2016 caught foreign governments by surprise with former French ambassador to the United States, Gerard Araud admitting, "In 2016, nobody believed he was going to be elected. People don’t want to be stupid twice.”
According to Politico, "There’s no known scientific survey on the topic — few foreign officials would participate in one given diplomatic norms that preclude them from commenting on another country's internal politics. But none who talked to POLITICO were willing to say that Trump will lose. Instead, they pointed to three key advantages for Trump: He’s the incumbent, the U.S. economy is strong and the Democrats have no definitive front-runner to challenge him."
Trump Twitter-rages at ‘evil propaganda machine’ New York Times
President Donald Trump kicked off his Sunday morning by going on a multi-tweet rant about the New York Times where he blamed them for his poor poll numbers and called them "an evil propaganda machine.'
Trump began with, "The Failing New York Times, in one of the most devastating portrayals of bad journalism in history, got caught by a leaker that they are shifting from their Phony Russian Collusion Narrative (the Mueller Report & his testimony were a total disaster), to a Racism Witch Hunt....., " before adding, "'Journalism' has reached a new low in the history of our Country. It is nothing more than an evil propaganda machine for the Democrat Party. The reporting is so false, biased and evil that it has now become a very sick joke...But the public is aware! #CROOKEDJOURNALISM."
Trump suggests hitting France with 100 percent tariff on wine over dispute with Macron
According to a report from Bloomberg, President Donald Trump publicly suggested that he would consider a 100 percent tariff on wines coming from France.
The report states that the president recently made the suggestion as part of his trade war that has crippled American manufacturers and farmers while at the same time hitting American consumers' wallets.
Trump's comments came during a recent Long Island fundraiser and were tied to his unhappiness with President Emmanuel Macron and his tax on multinational technology companies.