In the latest challenge to Alabama's ban on gay marriage, a lesbian couple is suing the state over recognition of their marriage, performed in Massachusetts. April and Ginger Aaron-Brush of Birmingham filed the lawsuit Tuesday in federal court in Birmingham.
The lawsuit asks a judge to declare the ban unconstitutional and require Alabama to recognize same-sex marriages performed validly in other states.
The American Civil Liberties Union is representing the couple.
A gay man whose husband was killed in a car accident is filing a federal lawsuit challenging the Alabama laws that prohibit the recognition of his marriage, which was legally performed in Massachusetts. The lawsuit in Montgomery federal court seeks to overturn Alabama's bans on the recognition of same-sex marriages legally performed in other states. Plaintiff Paul Hard and David Fancher, both of Montgomery, were married in 2011. Three months later, Fancher was killed in a car accident.
Most, but not all, full-time staff of the Alabama National Guard is covered by a new Pentagon policy providing benefits for same-sex couples.
Capt. Andrew Richardson of the Alabama National Guard says there are about 2,500 full-time Guardsmen in Alabama who are considered federal employees and are eligible for federal benefits. They are covered by the Pentagon's new policy.
He says the Guard has fewer than 300 full-time employees who are considered state employees, and they continue to receive state benefits. Those benefits don't cover same-sex marriages.
The chairman of the Alabama Republican Party says U.S. Supreme Court decisions favoring gay marriage are an affront to Christian principles and hurt taxpayers.
GOP chair Bill Armistead says Alabama taxpayers will now "be on the hook" for funding federal benefits to homosexual couples even though a decision striking down the Defense of Marriage Act only affects states where gay marriage is legal.
Armistead says the United States was founded on Christian values, and he says the Bible is clear that marriage can only between heterosexual couples.