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Politics

  • 12th February 2008

    Irish mostly comfortable with gay family 11

    The Irish government is expected to bring forward proposals for a form of civil partnerships in the EU nation at the end of March.

    12:45 PM — A new survey published ahead of proposed legislation to legally recognise same-sex relationships has found that more than half of Irish people would be unconcerned if their child or sibling is gay.The Sunday Independent/Millward Brown IMS poll did find that significant proportion of people would be "concerned."The high figures of acceptance, 53% unconcerned about a gay child and 56% a gay sibling, highlight the growing acceptance of LGB people in a society that only decriminalised homosexuality 15 years ago.

  • Unions demand gay question on 2011 census 25

    Final decisions on the content of the 2011 Census will not be made until the consultation and testing programme is complete and Parliament gives formal approval in 2010.

    12:20 PM — The General Secretary of the Trades Union Congress Brendan Barber has joined with gay equality organisation Stonewall's chief executive Ben Summerskill to ask for questions on sexual orientation to form part of the census.The next national survey will take place in 2011.It is conducted every 10 years by the Office of National Statistics (ONS), who announced last year that they did not think a question about sexual orientation would not be suitable.

  • Huckabee challenges result in Washington

    Huckabee defeated McCain by a narrow margin in the Louisiana Republican primary and beat him by a large tally in the Kansas caucuses.

    12:05 PM — Former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee is refusing to concede a loss to Arizona Senator John McCain in the Washington Republican caucuses.The Huckabee campaign is asking for a full recount of the caucus votes in order to determine the true winner of the contest.McCain believes he won the race, but has conceded to Huckabee's right to ask for a recount.

  • 11th February 2008

    Romania moves to exclude same-sex marriage

    Romania only joined the EU at the beginning of 2007, at which time it was required to recognise same-sex couples registered in other member states.

    7:30 PM — A leading human rights group has condemned an attempt by Senators in the Romanian parliament to change the country's Family Code on marriage.The far-right Greater Romania Party's amendment, which defines marriage as between a man and a woman, was passed unanimously by the Senate Judicial Committee.It will need full Senate approval before it moves to the Chamber of Deputies.

  • Swedish lesbians have a legal right to puppies

    During a phone call to the kennel owner enquiring about a puppy advertised for sale, the lesbian woman mentioned her partner.  photo: frazzledjen@flickr.com

    5:06 PM — An unusual case of discrimination in Sweden has led to a court ruling in favour of a women turned away from buying a puppy because she is a lesbian.The Local reports that the court of appeal in Stockholm confirmed that a kennel owner must pay 20,000 kronor (£1,580) for discrimination and harassment on the grounds of sexual orientation.During a phone call to the kennel owner enquiring about a puppy advertised for sale, the lesbian woman mentioned her partner. The owner then refused to sell the puppy to her.

  • Huckabee victories point to problems for McCain

    It is almost certain that Senator McCain will end up with the nomination.

    4:02 PM — He may be the Republican nominee for President in all but name, but results from two primaries over the weekend indicate that it could be a tough battle for Senator John McCain to win over sections of his own party.In the Kansas caucus former Governor of Arkansas and Baptist minister Mike Huckabee took 60% of the vote to 24% for McCain and 11% for maverick candidate Ron Paul.Huckabee also took Louisiana and the results from Washington state are still too close to call.

  • Politburo member backs gay marriage in Cuba 1

    Besides legal recognition, gays, lesbians and transsexuals in Cuba want respect.

    2:20 PM — A leading Cuban politician has welcomed proposals to allow gay men and lesbian marriage rights, as the country continues to discuss its future direction.The poor health of Fidel Castro, who has led the country as a one-party state since 1959, has sparked a renewed national debate in the only Communist country in the Caribbean.The revered leader's brother Raul Castro invited Cubans to speak out without fear, and among complains about taxes and restrictions on foreign travel and internet access the issue of gay rights has come to the fore.

  • Hillary sacks campaign manager, Obama wins Grammy

    At last night's Grammy awards Senator Obama won the spoken word award for his reading of his best-selling book The Audacity of Hope: Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream.

    12:43 PM — As the battle for the Democratic nomination continues to be the most closely-fought in decades, Senator Hillary Clinton has reordered her core team.Her rival Senator Barack Obama won yesterday's Maine caucus by a wide margin, his fourth victory over the weekend.The Former First Lady had been hoping to secure the state. Last week she had to lend her campaign $5m (£2.56m) of her own money after it suffered "cash flow problems."

  • Interview: The former cop who wants to run London

    “Faced with a ballot paper with Ken Livingstone and Boris Johnson staring up at them, I think people will hesitate.“

    11:45 AM — Brian Paddick is enjoying running for Mayor of London. The Liberal Democrat candidate may be a distant third in opinion polls, but he has one distinct advantage in this race - lots of people know who he is.The 2008 Mayoral election is already the most exciting contest since the post was established at the turn of the century.Incumbent Ken Livingstone is facing a concerted (some would say co-ordinated) barrage of negative press on everything from cronyism to his alcohol intake.

  • 10th February 2008

    Democrat passions run high at Washinton caucuses

    At the 46th District Democratic caucus, attended by this reporter, Obama supporters overwhelmingly outnumbered Clinton supporters.

    3:05 PM — Illinois Senator Barack Obama took the victory in the Washington caucus results on Saturday, beating out rival New York Senator Hillary Clinton by a strong margin.In the Republican primary, Arizona Senator John McCain pulled off a narrow win against former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee.In the Washington Republican caucuses, John McCain led over Mike Huckabee 26 percent to 24 percent with 87 percent of precincts reporting in.

  • Obama wins Washington state and Nebraska

    Obama took the victory by a landslide, showing once again his campaign's enormous strength in caucus states.

    3:20 AM — Illinois Senator Barack Obama claimed yet another state for his war chest on Saturday, defeating rival New York Senator Hillary Clinton in the Nebraska caucus results.Obama took the victory by a landslide, showing once again his campaign's enormous strength in caucus states. Obama also won in the Washington caucus results on Saturday.With 85 percent of precincts reporting in the Nebraska Democratic caucuses, Barack Obama led over Hillary Clinton 68 percent to 32 percent of the vote.

  • 8th February 2008

    Turks reject gays or atheists as neighbours 7

    Turkey is a candidate country for EU membership, but concerns about human rights are one factor frustrating negotiations.

    3:25 PM — A survey of Turkish attitudes has found that the vast majority would not want to live next to a gay person.1,579 persons in 41 cities were polled by Bahcesehir University's Economic and Social Research Centre.The results show that Turks are generally happy, think their country will join the EU if it meets all the criteria, but do not want to live next door to people with different identities.

  • Huckabee endorsed by evangelical Christians 3

    Arizona Senator McCain has than 707 nominating delegates to Governor Huckabee's 195.

    2:35 PM — A former Baptist minister who wants the Republican party nomination for US President has been backed by one of the most influential evangelicals in America.James Dobson from Focus on the Family is notorious for his homophobic views. His endorsement of former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee was announced yesterday.Focus on the Family claims to be a non-partisan organisation that "nurtures and develops families."

  • Stonewall ready for Commons battle over gay parents 20

    Christian MPs have raised objections to new rights for gay and lesbian parents.

    12:30 PM — Gay equality organisation Stonewall has said that new legislation before Parliament that will grant new rights to gay and lesbian parents will face further attempts to wreck it in the Commons.The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill proposes new recognition of same-sex couples as legal parents of children conceived through the use of donated sperm, eggs or embryos.The Bill was passed by the Lords on Monday and now goes to the House of Commons.

  • London Mayor candidate rejects Sharia law proposal

    Mr Paddick faces incumbent Mayor Ken Livingstone, the Labour candidate, and Tory MP Boris Johnson in the election for Mayor of London on May 1st.

    11:25 AM — The Liberal Democrat candidate for Mayor of London, Brian Paddick, has criticised the head of the Anglican communion for arguing that aspects of Sharia law should be recognised in Britain.Speaking on LBC radio this morning, Mr Paddick also revealed a new policy on bus fares and revealed that he did not recognise one of the Hollywood stars at his celebrity fundraising dinner.Politicians from all parties have criticised the Archbishop of Canterbury for remarks yesterday suggesting that certain aspects of Islamic law could be adopted in the UK.

  • Tatchell criticises ban on Islamic scholar

    Tatchell says that the British government's decision to ban Muslim cleric Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi from entering Britain to receive medical treatment is “illiberal, unwarranted and unmerciful.“

    11:02 AM — Human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell has said that the British government's decision to ban Muslim cleric Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi from entering Britain to receive medical treatment is "illiberal, unwarranted and unmerciful."The spiritual leader of Islamicist organisation the Muslim Brotherhood, Dr Qaradawi is known to have supported suicide bombings in Israel, the oppression of women's rights and has argued in the past that homosexuals should be put to death.

  • Analysis: Barack and Clinton’s numbers game 7

    A brokered convention is only further evidence of a bitterly divided Democratic party. photo: jessamyn@flickr.com

    10:44 AM — On Tuesday Senator Hillary Clinton managed to secure a slight edge over Barack Obama in terms of the number of delegates won over the course of 22 nationwide primaries.While Clinton used her experience, star quality, deep political connections and long-term history to score eight major wins in delegate rich states like California, Massachusetts, New York and New Jersey, Obama played to his oratorical and organisational strengths in smaller states.

  • 7th February 2008

    LGBT Muslims condemn ban on homophobic preacher 19

    The Home Office today announced  Dr al-Qaradawi would be refused entry over concerns his presence “could foster inter-community violence.“

    6:45 PM — Europe's largest support group for Muslim LGBT people has expressed concern that the decision to bar a controversial Islamic scholar from the UK could contribute to Islamophobia.Imaan has released a statement joining mainstream Muslim groups concerned at the Home Office decision to ban Sheikh Yusuf Al-Qaradawi.The spiritual leader of Islamicist organisation the Muslim Brotherhood is known to have supported suicide bombings in Israel.

  • Politicians dismiss Archbishop’s Islamic law comments 50

    A Downing St spokesman said that aspects of Islamic law could never be justified for breaking UK laws.

    6:30 PM — The Prime Minister's spokesman has distanced him from comments by the Archbishop of Canterbury concerning the introduction of aspects of Sharia law in the UK.Dr Rowan Williams said earlier today that a "constructive accommodation" must be found over issues such as divorce and added that people should not imagine "we know exactly what we mean by Sharia and just associate it with Saudi Arabia."A Downing St spokesman said that aspects of Islamic law could never be justified for breaking UK laws.

  • Romney withdraws from White House race

    He was weakened by defeat in Iowa at the hands of Huckabee and in New Hampshire at the hands of McCain.

    6:02 PM — Mitt Romney has dropped out of the contest to become the Republican party nominee for President of the United States.The former Governor of Massachusetts met with aides most of yesterday to discuss his next step.On Tuesday, when almost half of the states chose a Republican candidate, he was roundly defeated by Senator John McCain and lost a string of Southern states to Mike Huckabee, the former Governor of Arkansas.

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