Lawmakers: Faith-based adoption groups can spurn gay couples

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) -- Alabama lawmakers on Tuesday gave final approval to a bill protecting faith-based adoption organizations that refuse to place children with gay parents, or other households, because of their religious beliefs. The legislation would prohibit the state from refusing to license faith-based adoption groups that refuse placements because of their religious beliefs.

GOP senator regrets saying guy in tutu 'kind of asks for it'

WASHINGTON (AP) -- A Republican senator from Wyoming said Tuesday he regrets his poor choice of words after telling students a man who wears a tutu to a bar and gets into fights "kind of asks for it." Sen. Mike Enzi said in a statement that his comments at Greybull High School and Middle School last week were about respect, tolerance and the dangers of bullying.

Methodist court takes up challenge to election of gay bishop

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) -- The highest court in the United Methodist Church considered Tuesday whether to invalidate the election of the denomination's first openly gay bishop, amid a struggle to avoid schism over the Bible and same-sex relationships. The challenge was filed last year to the election of Bishop Karen Oliveto, who is married to another woman.

San Diego schools defend effort to fight Islamophobia

SAN DIEGO (AP) -- One of the nation's largest school districts is defending its campaign to fight Islamophobia and promote understanding of Muslim culture against critics who say it is favoring a religion. Kevin Beiser, vice president of the San Diego Unified School District board, said Tuesday that the effort is modeled on a plan he advanced several years ago to protect LGBT students. He said bullying of Muslim students is pervasive and vastly underreported.

NC governor's judicial pick marks small win in war with GOP

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) -- North Carolina's Democratic governor needed just 15 minutes Monday to replace a resigning Republican judge with an openly gay replacement on the state's second-highest court, the latest twist in his feud with the GOP-controlled General Assembly. Exploiting an opening before Republican lawmakers were expected to begin shrinking the Court of Appeals, Gov.

Russian foreign minister: No proof of persecution of gay men

MOSCOW (AP) -- Moscow wants to protect human rights but has no reason to believe reports about the persecution of gay men in Chechnya, Russian officials said on Monday. The Novaya Gazeta newspaper earlier this month reported that police in the predominantly Muslim republic rounded up more than 100 men suspected of homosexuality and that at least three of them were killed.

Hawaii bill giving equal access to fertility treatment dies

HONOLULU (AP) -- Hawaii lawmakers killed a bill that sought equal access to fertility treatments for gay and lesbian couples and single women. The decision came after health care lobbyists argued it was a bad idea to make insurers cover a fertility procedure for surrogate mothers that gay male couples rely on to have a child. State Sen.

Hillary Clinton: Progress in LGBT rights may not be secure

NEW YORK (AP) -- Hillary Clinton told an audience of LGBT advocates Thursday night that the progress they've achieved in recent years may not be secure under the Donald Trump administration, and urged them to keep fighting. "I know that the election hit a lot of us hard," Clinton said of her bitter loss to Trump in November.

Group complains judge who called rapist 'good man' is biased

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- A Utah judge who called a convicted rapist a "good man" during sentencing showed bias for the defendant because he was a former Mormon bishop, according to an official complaint filed Thursday by a gay rights group. Mark Lawrence of Restore our Humanity said the group sent the complaint to the state Judicial Conduct Commission, which can recommend the Utah Supreme Court reprimand or remove Judge Thomas Low.

Iowa administrator testifies fired coaches often gay

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) -- A former University of Iowa athletic administrator said Wednesday that during her tenure she became concerned after noticing that female coaches who were fired were often gay and had become more open about their sexuality. Jane Meyer testified about Iowa coaches as her case continued in Des Moines, where jurors are considering her claim that she suffered workplace discrimination as a gay woman in a relationship with a Hawkeye coach.

Transgender woman sues Idaho over birth certificate policy

BOISE, Idaho (AP) -- A transgender woman is suing Idaho in federal court for refusing to change the gender listed on her birth certificate. Most states allow people to change their birth certificate to reflect their gender identity rather than the gender they were assigned at birth. Only Idaho, Kansas, Ohio and Tennessee have policies or laws prohibiting such changes. In the lawsuit, the 28-year-old identified only with the initials F.V.

Alabama Supreme Court upholds Chief Roy Moore's suspension

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) -- Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore lost his effort to regain his job on Wednesday as the Alabama Supreme Court upheld his suspension for urging defiance of federal rulings allowing gays and lesbians to marry. The fiery jurist lashed out at Wednesday's decision, saying he considers his lengthy suspension to be both illegal and a "clear disregard of the will of the people who elected me chief justice.

The Latest: Alabama justice mulling run for higher office

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) -- The Latest on suspended Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore (all times local): 2:15 p.m. Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore says he will announce next week if he will run for higher office. Moore also lashed out at the Alabama Supreme Court, which upheld his suspension for the rest of his term for violating judicial ethics by urging state judges to defy the U.S. Supreme Court on gay marriage.

Texas governor gives first clear support for 'bathroom bill'

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) -- Republican Texas Gov. Greg Abbott for the first time Tuesday endorsed a "bathroom bill" and breathed new life into North Carolina-style efforts that businesses and LGBT rights groups hoped had stalled with time running out to sign into law. Abbott's sudden public support following months of silence is significant.

NCAA events awarded to North Carolina from 2019-22

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) -- A list of the NCAA events awarded Tuesday to North Carolina from 2019-22 after the state rolled back a law limiting protections for LGBT people: 2018-19 SEASON Division III men's and women's soccer championships, Greensboro (Nov. 30-Dec. 1, 2018) Division I women's soccer College Cup, Cary (Nov. 30-Dec.

NCAA returns events to NC after state rolls back LGBT law

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) -- The NCAA has awarded coveted men's basketball tournament games and other events to North Carolina, effectively ending a boycott that helped force the state to repeal parts of a law that limited protections for LGBT people. The governing body announced decisions Tuesday for events through 2022, two weeks after the NCAA said it had "reluctantly" agreed to consider North Carolina again for hosting duties.