Democrats & Religious Leaders Announce Bill Creating “Religious Freedom Day” in Utah

| January 20, 2015

**Originally published on Utah Political Capitol** Utah House Democrats and local religious leaders held a press conference Friday afternoon to announce legislation designating January 16th in Utah as Religious Freedom Day, honoring the first religious freedom law in the country. In 1786, the Commonwealth of Virginia passed into law the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom […]

A Most Sacred Trust – The Line Between Lawmaker & Paid Lobbyist?

| December 30, 2014

**This article was originally published on Utah Political Capitol** Where is the line between acting as a lawmaker on behalf of your constituents, and acting as a paid lobbyist? As the 2015 legislative session draws near, one Representative on Utah’s Capitol Hill may be drawing near it. On November 10, 2014, a new Utah nonprofit […]

Same-Sex Marriage and the Assault on Religious Freedom

| October 25, 2014

**Originally published on Utah Politico Hub Could religious organizations be forced to perform same-sex weddings? The hysterical panic surrounding an Idaho wedding chapel certainly seems to suggest so. But as always, if you’ll forgive the pun, the devil is the details and the story is little more exaggerated hype. Conservatives have long used the fear […]

Utah Social Security Finally Relents – Grants Same-Sex Couples Benefits

| October 14, 2014

After denying benefits to legally married same-sex couples for over a week, SSA is now calling the couples and telling them to come back in. 1,300 same-sex couples were married in Utah between December 2013 and January 2014, during the brief window where marriage equality was legal before the U.S. Supreme Court imposed a stay […]

Utah Same-Sex Couple Threatens Social Security With Lawsuit Over Denied Benefits

| October 10, 2014

Same-sex married couples in Utah are still being turned away at Social Security offices statewide, despite five days passing since the U. S. Supreme Court decision which overturned Utah’s ban on those marriages. At least one of those couples is now threatening a federal lawsuit if they are not granted their legal benefits. Austin and […]

Utah Social Security Offices Still Denying Married Same-Sex Couples Benefits

| October 8, 2014

**Originally published by The New Civil Rights Movement and Q Salt Lake** Several of the local Social Security Administration offices in Utah are still refusing to issue new Social Security cards to married same-sex couples, despite court rulings requiring them to do so. Austin and James Vance, Dennis and Matt Gwyther, and Shelie and Ada […]

Long View: Why SCOTUS’ Same-Sex Marriage Decision Was Only Proper Option

| October 8, 2014

No matter which side of the issue you’re on, the Supreme Court’s decision to reject the seven same-sex cases that had been submitted was the only proper option. *Originally published on New Civil Rights Movement Under normal circumstances, the loser of a case at the state level might appeal that ruling to the appellate level, […]