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Taiwan voters set to block same-sex marriage in referendum

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Taiwan voters were set to back a referendum that defines marriage as between a man and a woman, dealing a blow to the self-ruled island’s reputation for liberalism in Asia amid a heated debate over marriage equality.

In Asia’s first such ruling, Taiwan’s constitutional court declared in May 2017 that same-sex couples had the right to legally marry, and set a two-year deadline for legalization.

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But the island’s election authority earlier this year approved contradicting referendum petitions from both conservative and rights groups.

While the election authority had not yet announced the final results of Saturday’s referendum, more than six million voters approved a series of initiatives opposing marriage equality, passing a threshold needed for a public vote.

The vote presents a major defeat for rights activists who had campaigned for equal marriage.

“This is a victory for all the people who support family value and the education for the next generation,” the Coalition for the Happiness of Our Next Generation, a group opposed to same-sex marriage, said in a statement.

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“The referendum is illegal and against the constitution, and has sharply divided and harmed the society,” the Marriage Equality Coalition Taiwan said in a statement.

“The result showed that most people were misled by false information from anti-gay groups,” it said.

The government has said the ruling of May 2017 will not be challenged by referendum results. But the authorities are expected to enact a special law for same-sex unions after Saturday’s vote.

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The vote presents a challenge to President Tsai Ing-wen, who activists say has backed away from a promise of marriage equality which she made in the run-up to elections in 2016.

The issue has divided Taiwan, at family dining room tables, online and on the streets, with large campaigns and rallies on both sides of the debate.

Taiwan hosts the region’s largest annual gay pride parade showcasing its lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community.

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Reporting by Yimou Lee and Jess Macy Yu; editing by Jason Neely


Report typos and corrections to: [email protected].
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‘It’s treachery if not treason’: Harvard’s Laurence Tribe destroys Trump’s claim he’s above the law

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Legendary constitutional law expert Laurence Tribe explained the legality of President Donald Trump's claim to be above the law during a Thursday evening appearance on MSNBC's "The Last Word" with Lawrence O'Donnell.

The host played a notorious clip of Trump.

"I could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn’t lose any voters. Okay? It’s like incredible," Trump argued.

"And now he has gone beyond that," O'Donnell noted. "Now the president is sayin, 'I could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot someone and I cannot be prosecuted for that crime. Or any crime.'"

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Marine Corps unit busted planning to hold a party at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort: report

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President Donald Trump is facing yet another corruption scandal after a Marine Corps unit was caught planning to hold a party at the commander-in-chief's Mar-a-Lago resort.

"At a time when taxpayer and foreign-government spending at Trump Organization properties is fueling political battles, a U.S. Marine Corps reserve unit stationed in South Florida hopes to hold an annual ball at a venue that could profit the commander-in-chief," the Miami Herald reported Thursday.

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Internet blown away by Giuliani’s ‘pants-sh*tting panic’ freak out on CNN’s Cuomo

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Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani received harsh reviews of his Thursday evening appearance on CNN with anchor Chris Cuomo.

Many people worried about Giuliani's mental health after watching the interview.

Here is some of what people were saying about Trump's defense attorney.

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