Archive for the ‘gay marriage’ Category

Sonny Perdue takes himself out of 2014 race for Senate

Former Gov. Sonny Perdue has declared himself out of a 2014 contest to replace U.S. Sen. Saxby Chambliss, but placed himself on the side of Republicans who believe the party has become too rigid in its approach.

In a statement e-mailed this morning, the governor declared himself “flattered” by the support that has been offered, but cited his reasons for avoiding the contest: A dozen grandchildren, business obligations and “a loving and devoted wife who has absolutely no interest in living in Washington.” From his statement:

Gov. Sonny Perdue has removed himself from the long list of Republicans considering a 2014 run for the U.S. Senate. Curtis Compton/ccompton@ajc.com

Gov. Sonny Perdue has removed himself from the long list of Republicans considering a 2014 run for the U.S. Senate. Curtis Compton/ccompton@ajc.com

“Our country deserves more than the current dysfunction in Washington D.C. and our party needs to return to problem-solving conservatism. We have an opportunity, led by the examples of Republican Governors across the nation, to prove to the country that we are the party that can rise above the dogma and …

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Paul Broun on Saxby Chambliss challenge: ‘How can you not think about it?’

However coyly, U.S. Rep. Paul Broun, R-Athens, this morning admitted he’s thinking about a 2014 primary challenge to Sen. Saxby Chambliss.

“I don’t know. I’m honored that a lot of people are asking me to run. I’ve not made that decision,” Broun told Tim Bryant on WGAU (1340 AM) in Athens. “It’s not time to think about it.”

But when Bryant pressed him, Broun said this: “When people encourage you to run, how can you not think about it?”

Part of keeping the powder dry: Broun said he’ll oppose the new House resolution that postpones a confrontation over the debt ceiling until May.

The Athens congressman, who proudly boycotted the 2008 presidential inauguration, didn’t go to this one, either. “I had a lot of folks who wanted my tickets, so I didn’t go,” the congressman said.

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So now we see why the organizers of President Barack Obama’s second inauguration were so anxious to be shed of the Rev. Louie Giglio of Atlanta – who was originally assigned the task of giving the …

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Your daily jolt: Gingrey open to limits on mag clips, says Todd Akin was ‘partly right’

Schmoozing with constituents in Smyrna on Thursday, U.S. Rep. Phil Gingrey, R-Marietta, had already made news when he said that he was open to some new restrictions on firearms. From the first five paragraphs written by Jon Gillooly of the Marietta Daily Journal:

“There are some problems, and maybe these huge magazines even for someone who says, ‘look, I just use an AR-15 for target practice,’ but do you really need to be standing there shooting at a silhouette a shot a second or even quicker with that kind of weapon? For what purpose?” Gingrey asked. “I would be willing to listen to the possibility of the capacity of a magazine.”

Gingrey, who took the time to praise Adventure Outdoors owner Jay Wallace as the gold standard for running a responsible gun retail business, said he is also open to revisions of the so-called gun show loophole.

But then the Marietta congressman decided to wax eloquent on the most egregious Republican misstep of 2012 – the concept of “legitimate …

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Atlanta pastor withdraws from Obama inauguration ceremony

From the Associated Press:

The evangelical pastor chosen to give the benediction at President Barack Obama’s inauguration withdrew from the ceremony Thursday after remarks he made two decades ago condemning the gay rights movement surfaced.

The Rev. Louie Giglio of Passion City Church in Atlanta said in a statement he withdrew because it was likely that the “prayer I would offer will be dwarfed by those seeking to make their agenda the focal point of the inauguration.”

Addie Whisenant, a spokeswoman for the Presidential Inaugural Committee, said the committee had chosen Giglio because of his work to end human trafficking.

“We were not aware of Pastor Giglio’s past comments at the time of his selection and they don’t reflect our desire to celebrate the strength and diversity of our country at this inaugural,” Whisenant said in a statement.

The liberal website ThinkProgress posted audio of the sermon Wednesday. In the talk, which the pastor said he gave 15 or 20 years ago, …

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Your daily jolt: Nathan Deal wants to stay out of gun debate

Gov. Nathan Deal’s sit-down with Lori Geary of Channel 2 Action News on Wednesday was primarily intended to spread the news that the state’s economic woes had eased enough to boost HOPE scholarships by 3 percent and add 10 days to the pre-kindergarten schedule.

But Geary was also able to sneak in a question about gun legislation – which has become a hot topic for governor’s elsewhere. Said Deal:

”It is a time that is fraught with emotions on both sides of the issue. I’ve heard of proposed legislation, but none of that is part of my agenda.”

Don’t consider that declaration of neutrality to be a green light for the handful of bills already filed in the House, in anticipation of the new session of the Legislature that begins Monday. Several have been filed by incoming freshman Charles Gregory, R-Kennesaw, who has proposed removing state bans on (permitted) concealed weapons in churches and on public university campuses.

The governor’s statement could very well be a declaration …

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Chairman of Illinois GOP endorses gay marriage

Pat Brady, the chairman of the Illinois Republican party, has endorsed gay marriage, improving the chances of legislation to that effect now pending before that state’s legislature. From the Chicago Sun-Times:

“More and more Americans understand that if two people want to make a lifelong commitment to each other, government should not stand in their way,” Brady said. “Giving gay and lesbian couples the freedom to get married honors the best conservative principles. It strengthens families and reinforces a key Republican value – that the law should treat all citizens equally.”

“Importantly, the pending legislation would protect the freedom of religion,” Brady added. “No church or religious organization would ever be required to perform a union with which it disagrees.”

The National Organization for Marriage, an opponent of same-sex unions, immediately pledged to spend $250,000 against any state lawmaker who agrees with the GOP chair. From the just-arrived press release:

“Any …

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Video: Kasim Reed talks gay marriage on MSNBC

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Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed did his first national interview on his flip in support of same-sex marriage today on MSNBC and offered fodder for those parsing Reed’s statewide aspirations. When asked whether he would support an effort to overturn Georgia’s 2004 constitutional ban on gay marriage, Reed noted that he voted against that effort in the state Senate and added:

My evolvement, if you will, really occurred around moving from civil unions to being comfortable with marriage. And that’s where I ended up, and I intend to carry that message all over Georgia.

Reed also offered new detail on how his longtime friendship with Atlanta attorney Lee Schreter and her partner informed his switch:

They invited me to their wedding in New York and I was conflicted. I did not go because I would have felt like a hypocrite. But it did cause me to think more and more and then I talked to my dad, and he and I have been …

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Kasim Reed announces support for gay marriage

Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed has officially evolved. Through a press release this afternoon, Reed announced his support of gay marriage.

President Barack Obama in May said his views “evolved” in announcing his support, and Reed today says he has “gone through a good bit of reflection on this issue, but listening to the stories of so many people that I know and care about has strengthened my belief that marriage is a fundamental right for everyone.”

When Obama made his announcement there was some pushback on the issue in the African-American church. At the time Reed said he was still “wrestling with my own personal beliefs.” There are signs that black public opinion quickly shifted on the matter, particularly in Maryland, where voters approved same-sex marriage last month. The U.S. Supreme Court is set to consider the issue next year.

From a political standpoint, Reed aligns himself with U.S. Rep. John Lewis — a proponent as far back as 2003 — and gets ahead of what is likely to …

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Your daily jolt: Fiscal cliff talks begin – between Saxby Chambliss and Grover Norquist

Crucial negotiations over the fiscal cliff are finally underway in Washington. So far, they only include Republicans.

U.S. Sen. Saxby Chambliss told my AJC colleague Daniel Malloy that he and anti-tax maven Grover Norquist had a long chat on Monday and that they are still buddies, despite continuing differences over what constitutes a tax hike.

“Grover and I are friends, and as we said we were friends before last weekend and we’re going to be friends after my comments because he understands we have a disagreement on this issue of what you do with revenue generated from the elimination of loopholes and tax credits,” Chambliss said this morning. “We’re going to continue to dialogue with him, and if we have issues we’ll work through them. We had a very good conversation.”

At issue is Norquist’s Taxpayer Protection Pledge, which has been signed by Chambliss and nearly every Republican in Congress, promising not to increase tax revenue to the federal government through increased …

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Your daily jolt: ‘Al-Qaeda isn’t on the run,’ says Saxby Chambliss

When Congress returns after the election, Saxby Chambliss said the Senate Intelligence Committee will hold a hearing to address the questions that remain unanswered about last month’s deadly attack on a U.S. compound in Libya, from why it took the FBI three weeks to get to Benghazi to the links between the attackers and al-Qaeda.

According to my AJC colleague Daniel Malloy in Washington, Chambliss — the ranking Republican on the committee — was privy to much of the same information that President Barack Obama.

That makes the shifting administration account of what happened all the more disturbing, Chambliss said in a telephone interview this morning.

“He stood up in the Rose Garden [on Sept. 12], and he’d seen some of the same information some of the rest of us had seen that unquestionably called it a terrorist attack,” Chambliss said. The senator argued that Obama’s reference to “acts of terror” – a key point in Tuesday’s presidential debate, likely to surface again in a …

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