LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — A judge ordered Arkansas officials on Tuesday to recognize more than 500 same-sex marriages performed in the state last year, a move that will let the couples enjoy a host of benefits such as filing taxes jointly and enrolling together in state health insurance plans.
A judge ordered Arkansas on Tuesday to recognize hundreds of same-sex marriages that were performed during a six-day window in the state in May 2014 and have since been in legal limbo. The ruling from Pulaski County Judge Wendell Griffen applies to about 500 couples who received marriage licenses during the time when clerks issued them to same-sex couples in places such as Pulaski County, the state's most populous area and home to the capital, Little Rock. "With shameless disrespect for fundamental fairness and equality, (the state) insists on treating the marriages of same-sex couples who received marriage licenses between May 9 and May 15 as ‘void as a matter of law,'" he wrote in his decision.
CHICAGO (AP) — Former U.S. House Speaker Dennis Hastert's brief appearance in federal court Tuesday did little to answer a long list of legal questions about the case against him, and even created some new ones.
The group of activists pushing for the recall of Ferguson Mayor James Knowles III submitted 1,008 valid signatures - 806 short of the 1,814 needed to get a recall on a city ballot, said Eric Fey, director of the St. Louis County Board of Elections. A total of 1,125 signatures were declared invalid for various reasons - 562 were not registered voters in St. Louis County, and 366 were not registered voters in Ferguson, Fey said. The Ferguson city clerk must issue a certificate notifying petitioners of the validity issues, according to the city.