- - Wednesday, October 5, 2011

CALIFORNIA

Gay-rights group nixes fight for now

SAN FRANCISCO — California’s largest gay-rights group has decided against trying to have the state’s voter-approved ban on same-sex unions overturned next year.

Equality California announced Wednesday that it would not lead a ballot campaign to undo Proposition 8. The constitutional amendment limited marriage to a man and a woman five months after the state Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriages.

Executive Director Roland Palencia says polls show voters are still divided and a court challenge that could overturn the measure is still pending. As a result, he says the time is not right to undertake a risky and expensive ballot fight.

Instead, Equality California plans to devote its resources to a public education and messaging campaign to counter beliefs that allowing gay and lesbian couples to marry harms children.

CAMPAIGN

Paul: U.S. could target journalists for killing

Republican presidential contender Ron Paul on Wednesday suggested that the United States could assassinate journalists the same way it targeted Americans with ties to al Qaeda.

The Texas congressman again criticized President Obama for approving last week’s drone strikes in Yemen against a U.S. citizen who was tracked and executed based on secret intelligence that linked him to two failed terrorist attacks against the U.S. An American-born propagandist also died in the bombing. Escalating his criticism, Mr. Paul told a National Press Club luncheon that if citizens do not protest the deaths, the country will start adding reporters to its list of threats that must be taken out.

“Can you imagine being put on a list because you’re a threat? What’s going to happen when they come to the media? What if the media becomes a threat? … This is the way this works. It’s incrementalism,” Mr. Paul said.

“It’s slipping and sliding, let me tell you.”

Anwar al-Awlaki, the target of the U.S. drone attack, was one of the best-known al Qaeda figures after Osama bin Laden. American intelligence officials had linked him to two thwarted attacks on U.S.-bound planes, an airliner on Christmas 2009 and cargo planes last year. The second American killed in the drone attack, Samir Kahn, was the editor of Inspire, a slick online magazine aimed at al Qaeda sympathizers in the West.

Mr. Paul likened the pair to German officials who carried out the Holocaust, but were still given trials.

SENATE

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