Stories about Maine Civil Liberties Union


Same-sex marriage supporters say minds have been changed, seek new referendum

By Judy Harrison on Jan. 26, 2012, at 1:04 p.m.
AUGUSTA | Lucie Bauer has changed quite a few minds about same-sex marriage over the more than 20 years she and her partner have lived in midcoast Maine, the 71-year-old said Thursday at a press conference to announce that petitions to put a referendum on the ballot in November …

Gay marriage supporters to announce Thursday if they will force Maine referendum

The Associated Press on Jan. 25, 2012, at 3:41 p.m.
AUGUSTA | Gay marriage supporters have more than enough signatures to force another statewide referendum. The only question is whether they’re going to do it. On Thursday, EqualityMaine, the Maine Civil Liberties Union and the Maine Women’s Lobby will announce the decision during a press conference at the State …

Police may not charge drivers stopped just to obtain information, Maine court rules

By Judy Harrison on Aug. 02, 2011, at 7:26 p.m.
PORTLAND | The Maine Supreme Judicial Court on Tuesday unanimously ruled that a police officer may not charge a driver with a crime if the person initially was stopped solely because the officer was seeking information. The court vacated the drunken driving conviction in Hancock County Superior Court of …

LePage joins Texas governor in supporting ‘day of prayer’

By Steve Mistler, Sun Journal on July 20, 2011, at 1:34 p.m.
AUGUSTA | Gov. Paul LePage is supporting a call to make Aug. 6 a national day of prayer and fasting, a move hailed by Christian groups but assailed by organizations who believe the state shouldn’t promote one religion over another. The governor signed the proclamation in early June, joining …

Coalition to wage people’s veto campaign to revive Election Day voter registration law

By Kevin Miller on June 23, 2011, at 8:32 p.m.
AUGUSTA | Critics of the Legislature’s recent decision to end Election Day voter registration in Maine said Thursday a broad coalition is building to quickly collect the 57,000-plus signatures needed to put the issue in front of voters this November. “We are organized, we are energized and we will …

Tempers flare as private prison considered in Milo

By Christopher Cousins on June 09, 2011, at 9:31 p.m.
Tempers flared Thursday at a forum on bringing a private prison to Maine, underlining the difficult choice this small Maine town faces if talk of bringing a for-profit prison here continues. Approximately 60 Milo-area residents turned out for the forum, which was organized by the Maine Prisoner …

Senate GOP, Dems clash over same-day voter registration

By Kevin Miller on June 08, 2011, at 9:44 p.m.
AUGUSTA | Senate Republicans followed the lead of their House GOP colleagues on Wednesday by voting to eliminate both same-day voter registration and early voting by absentee ballot just before an election. The Senate voted 18-17 largely along party lines to approve changes that supporters insist are necessary to …

Maine Senate kills transgender bathrooms bill

By Glenn Adams, The Associated Press on June 08, 2011, at 5:04 p.m.
AUGUSTA | The state Senate voted Wednesday to kill legislation addressing the use of public restrooms by transgender individuals, a bill that supporters said was meant to help businesses and schools in an untenable situation but that opponents said was fueled by bigotry and hatred. After similar action by …
An worker mans his post during an election in Houlton in 2010. The Maine House on Monday gave its preliminary approval to bills that would end same-day registration and require voters to provide photo identification at the polls.

House supports banning same-day voter registration, requiring IDs at polls

By Steve Mistler, Sun Journal on June 07, 2011, at 5:11 a.m.
AUGUSTA | The House of Representatives on Monday gave preliminary approval to a pair of bills that will change how and when Mainers vote. The House voted 74-70 along party lines to approve LD 1376, a bill backed by Republican leadership and Secretary of State Charlie Summers that eliminates …

Maine Secretary of State supports bill eliminating same-day voter registration

By Steve Mistler, Sun Journal on June 01, 2011, at 5:23 a.m.
AUGUSTA | Secretary of State Charlie Summers and Republican leaders are supporting a bill that would eliminate Maine’s 38-year-old same-day voting registration and ban absentee voting two business days before Election Day. Proponents say the bill is designed to ease the workload of town clerks overwhelmed by an increasing …

Maine lawmaker kills Arizona-style immigration bill

The Associated Press on May 11, 2011, at 5:31 a.m.
AUGUSTA | A Wells lawmaker is winning kudos from civil libertarians after withdrawing her bill that called for an immigration law similar to Arizona’s. At Republican Rep. Kathleen Chase’s request, Judiciary Committee members voted to kill her bill. It would have required police who legally detain a person for a suspected …

Panel struggles with bill addressing Maine’s painkiller problem

By Scott Thistle, Sun Journal on May 10, 2011, at 10:57 a.m.
AUGUSTA | A bill that increases constraints on doctors and other health care providers while requiring pharmacies to check photo IDs when dispensing opioid-based painkillers got an initial hearing before the Legislature’s Health and Human Services Committee on Monday. The bill, sponsored by Rep. Jon Hinck, D-Portland, is modeled …

Legislature to consider expansion of DNA testing

By Mal Leary on April 29, 2011, at 8:05 p.m.
AUGUSTA, Maine – People charged with major violent crimes would be required to surrender DNA samples to law enforcement officials under legislation endorsed by a legislative committee this week. The bill, while supported by the majority of the Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee, raised concerns of civil rights activists, …

Maine Rep. proposes online registry of drunken drivers

By Mal Leary on April 03, 2011, at 3:18 p.m.
AUGUSTA | More than 8,000 Mainers were arrested for drunken driving in 2009, the most recent statistics available, and Rep. Rich Cebra, R-Naples, says Mainers should know who those drivers are. “I want a website at [the Maine Department of] Public Safety that will have their names and addresses …

Report: People need almost no legal training to set bail

By Emily Guerin, Mary Helen Miller, Naomi Schalit and John Christie ©Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting on March 22, 2011, at 10:50 p.m.
PART 1 OF 4 If you are arrested in Maine, everyone you deal with — with one exception — will be a professional. The police officer who arrested you is certified and has at least 100 hours of training. The prosecuting attorney, your own attorney and the judge all went …

MCLU files suit challenging election rules on behalf of Cutler Files creator

The Associated Press on March 10, 2011, at 1:55 p.m.
PORTLAND | The Maine Civil Liberties Union has filed a lawsuit challenging state election rules on behalf of one of the creators of a political website that took aim at a candidate in last fall’s gubernatorial campaign. The complaint in Cumberland County Superior Court was filed on behalf of …
Rep. Richard Cebra, R-Naples, holds up his driver's license in his office at the State House in Augusta, Maine, on Tuesday, March 1, 2011. Cebra is a co-sponser of a Maine proposal that would require voters to show photo identification at the polls.

Bill would require Maine voters to show photo ID

The Associated Press on March 01, 2011, at 1:23 p.m.
PORTLAND, Maine — Maine for years has made voting as easy and convenient as possible. But casting ballots soon could become harder for some people under a proposal to require voters to present photo identification at the polls. Supporters say requiring photo IDs is prudent to safeguard the state’s election system. …

Local advocates sound off on president’s shift on Defense of Marriage Act

By Eric Russell on Feb. 23, 2011, at 5:38 p.m.
Supporters called it an important step toward full equality for same-sex couples. Critics called it a dangerous political ploy for a president to decide which laws to enforce. Mainers with strong opinions about same-sex marriage sounded off Wednesday on President Barack Obama’s sudden policy reversal on a federal law that …

Bill would allow red-light traffic cameras

By Mal Leary on Feb. 21, 2011, at 7:52 p.m.
AUGUSTA | It’s been two years since Maine banned the use of red-light traffic cameras to catch those who don’t stop at intersections, but a Maine lawmaker says that was a mistake and has introduced legislation allowing the devices. “They have been proven to save lives in places that …
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