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Michigan delays on gay unions

– Michigan state agencies won’t immediately recognize hundreds of same-sex marriages that were performed in the hours before an appeals court put on hold a judge’s ruling that tossed out a state ban on gay marriage, the governor’s office said Sunday.

About 300 couples wed Saturday in four Michigan counties before a federal appeals court placed a stay on a Detroit federal judge’s decision overturning the state’s 2004 constitutional ban on same-sex marriage.

The decision blocks the state’s county clerks from issuing new same-sex marriage licenses until the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals decides whether to extend the stay. That’s expected no sooner than Wednesday.

Gov. Rick Snyder’s policy could block newlywed gay couples from applying for adoptions of children and tax benefits available to married couples in Michigan.


Opponents renew health care fight

The Obama administration and its opponents are renewing the Supreme Court battle over President Barack Obama’s health care law in a case that pits the religious rights of employers against the rights of women to the birth control of their choice.

Two years after the entire law survived the justices’ review by a single vote, the court is hearing arguments Tuesday in a religious challenge from family-owned companies – Oklahoma City-based Hobby Lobby Stores Inc. and Conestoga Wood Specialties Corp. of East Earl, Pa. – that object to covering certain contraceptives in their health plans as part of the law’s preventive care requirement.

5 assumed dead after plane crash

A small plane believed to be carrying five people crashed into a reservoir in southwestern Colorado and authorities say all are feared dead.

The single-engine Socata TBM700 was flying from Bartlesville, Okla., to Montrose, about 180 miles southwest of Denver, when it went down Saturday, Ouray County spokeswoman Marti Whitmore said.

1 dead, 16 hurt after bus crash

A shuttle bus transporting a group back from a birthday party collided with a car and overturned before dawn Sunday along Interstate 95 south of the nation’s capital, leaving one person dead and sending 16 others to the hospital, Virginia State Police said.

The driver of a white sedan that collided with the bus did not stop but was arrested later Sunday and charged with one felony count of hit-and-run, state police said.

Police said nine people were ejected from the bus during the wreck.


Spain’s 1st premier after Franco dies

Adolfo Suarez, Spain’s first democratically elected prime minister after decades of right-wing rule under Gen. Francisco Franco, has died at 81.

Suarez died Sunday afternoon in Madrid’s Cemtro Clinic hospital, family spokesman Fermin Urbiola said. Suarez had been suffering from Alzheimer’s disease for a decade.

Suarez was 43 when he was chosen in 1976 by King Juan Carlos to lead the country toward a democratic parliamentary monarchy after Franco’s death a year earlier.

He later lost the support of his political party and resigned in 1981. Suarez ran for election in 1982 and lost.