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CBS News investigation finds Kim Davis’ lawyer behind anti-LGBT bills in 20 states

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The lawyer who represented Kentucky county clerk Kim Davis after she refused to issue same-sex marriage licenses told CBS News that his group was also behind anti-LGBT legislation being pushed in at least 20 states.

After governors in North Carolina and Mississippi recently signed laws limiting the rights of LGBT people, CBS News began investigating why so many anti-LGBT bills were cropping up in state legislatures around the country.

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The network found that the conservative group Liberty Counsel had placed lawyers in all 50 states to draft legislation and advise lawmakers on how to rein in the rights of LGBT people in response to a Supreme Court ruling which legalized same-sex marriage in 2015.

CBS determined that bills tied to Liberty Counsel have been filed in at least 20 states so far.

“Well I certainly want to push back against that [same-sex marriage] ruling,” Liberty Counsel founder Matt Staver told CBS News. “It was a wrong ruling. It has no basis in the constitution.”

“The Supreme Court in the 5-4 opinion on marriage in 2015 lit the house on fire,” he added. “All we’re trying to do is control the fire at this point in time.”

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Staver insisted that the bills were “about being free to pursue your faith,” and that his group had “no interest in discriminating against anyone.”

He also asserted that companies did not have the guts to go through with boycotts of states that enacted pro-discrimination legislation.

“They’re not gonna follow through,” he declared. “It’s a bluff. They’re not leaving.”

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In fact, companies and entertainers have already followed through with threats to boycott North Carolina. PayPal almost immediately cancelled an expansion of 500 jobs, and numerous others have also frozen expansion plans. Both Bruce Springsteen and Ringo Starr recently cancelled events in the state.

Wake County’s tourism board warned this week that the Raleigh area alone was set to lose out on $24 million in economic benefits.

(h/t: Joe My God)

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2020 Election

Trump’s longshot bid to win New Mexico has political leaders baffled: ‘He’s a batsh*t racist’

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Despite losing New Mexico by eight points in the 2016 presidential election, Donald Trump and his campaign manager Brad Pascale are making big plans to win the state in 2020 -- and that has political observers baffled.

With Trump appearing in New Mexico on Monday night, Politico reports the president has his work cut out for him in a state that saw the GOP lose the governorship and one House seat in 2018.

"The Land of Enchantment has voted for a Republican presidential candidate only once since 1992. With a considerable nonwhite voter population and all-Democratic congressional delegation, it’s not exactly fertile ground for a surprise GOP victory," the report notes before adding that Parscale feels they can make inroads this go-around.

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Oil prices soar more than 10% after Saudi plant attacks

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Oil prices surged more than 10 percent Monday after attacks on two Saudi Arabian plants that slashed output in the world's top producer by half, with Donald Trump blaming Iran and raising the possibility of a military strike on the country.

West Texas Intermediate jumped 10.68 percent to $60.71 and Brent climbed 11.77 percent to $67.31 in early Asia trading following the blasts at facilities run by state-owned giant Aramco.

The attack by Tehran-backed Huthi rebels in neighbouring Yemen, where a Saudi-led coalition is bogged down in a five-year war, effectively shut down six percent of the global oil supply.

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2020 Election

Most top Democratic presidential candidates demand Kavanaugh’s impeachment – but not all

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Most of the top Democratic presidential candidates are issuing calls demanding U.S. Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh be impeached, after new allegations of sexual misconduct in a bombshell New York Times report late Saturday night. Most of the candidates, but not all.

Julián Castro, Saturday night at 11:25 PM:

It’s more clear than ever that Brett Kavanaugh lied under oath. He should be impeached.

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