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Federal appeals court refuses to issue stay on marriage equality in South Carolina

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The 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals declined on Tuesday to stay a District Court ruling from last week that struck down the gay marriage ban in South Carolina, meaning same-sex weddings could happen there as soon as Thursday.

South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson, a Republican, said in a statement his office would ask the U.S. Supreme Court to stay the District court’s ruling.

“This issue has not yet been resolved nationally,” he said in a statement.

“Today’s ruling by the Fourth Circuit does not end the constitutional obligation of this Office to defend South Carolina law,” Wilson said.

South Carolina would become the 34th state to allow gay marriage if it is allowed to go ahead.

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The U.S. Supreme Court rejected a similar stay application last week that was filed by Kansas officials. Like South Carolina, Kansas was bound by a regional appeals court ruling that struck down bans in other states.

Although gay marriage advocates have had the advantage in the courts over the past year, a Cincinnati-based federal appeals court on Nov. 6 became the first to uphold gay marriage bans.

That decision by the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals backing four states’ bans created a split within the courts, increasing the chances the Supreme Court will rule once and for all on whether states can ban gay marriage.

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The high court has so far declined to take up cases that would lead to a definitive ruling on gay marriage, allowing gay marriage to proceed in five states when it refused to hear appeals in seven cases in October.

(Reporting by Harriet McLeod, Lawrence Hurley and Jonathan Kaminsky; Writing by David Adams; Editing by Sandra Maler and Peter Cooney)


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Trump hates women of color for birthing babies keeping him from ‘making America white again’: MSNBC analyst

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President Donald Trump's loathing of women of color is driven by the fact he hates the babies they birth, a Rutgers University professor argued on MSNBC on Friday.

"The Beat" anchor Ari Melber interviewed Prof. Brittney Cooper about Trump's racist attacks on four young women of color in Congress.

"Look, the thing that bothers me about Trump and his cronies is that they have a long history of attacking women of color, and it’s really important to say these comments are not just racist, they’re also deeply sexist," Cooper explained.

"They don't just attack people of color, they also specifically go after women of color," she continued.

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Hope Hicks’ testimony ‘appears to be false’ — and Democrats have a plan to prove it: Judiciary member

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Former White House communications director Hope Hicks likely lied to Congress -- and Democrats have a plan to prove it, a Democrat on the House Judiciary said on MSNBC on Friday.

Anchor Peter Alexander interviewed Rep. Steve Cohen (D-TN) about potential perjury by Hicks, who was a close confidant of Trump during his campaign, transition, and administration.

"It has been several months since President Trump’s former fixer Michael Cohen testified that President Trump directed him to pay hush-money payments to adult film star Stephanie Clifford, also known as Stormy Daniels, but new documents muddy the waters a bit for former White House communications director Hope Hicks, who testified to the House Judiciary Committee that she had no knowledge of the payments before they were made," Alexander reported.

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2020 Election

‘Liberal paper straws don’t work’: Trump wants plastic straws but has ‘bigger problems’ to worry about

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Swapping paper for plastic turned out to be the last straw for Donald Trump, who said Friday there are "bigger problems" than plastic drinking straws -- the day after his reelection campaign manager promoted branded ones on Twitter.

The president made his position clear to reporters at the White House when, between questions about Iran and China, one asked him about growing efforts to ban plastic straws.

"I do think we have bigger problems than plastic straws," Trump replied.

After a brief pause, he expanded on the point, asking: "You have a little straw. What about the plates, the wrappers and everything else that are much bigger and made of the same material?"

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