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URGENT: Video shows beheading of second American journalist

DUBAI (Reuters) - The Islamic State militant group released a video purporting to show the beheading of U.S. hostage Steven Sotloff, the SITE monitoring service reported on Tuesday. A masked figure in the video also issued a threat against a British hostage, a man the group named as David Haines, and warned governments to back off "this evil alliance of America against the Islamic State", the monitoring service said. (Reporting by William Maclean, Editing by Angus MacSwan)

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Wisconsin AG: "Makes no sense" to allow same-sex marriages with unknown future

JB Van Hollen (properly sized)
JB Van Hollen (properly sized)

CHICAGO (WTAQ) - Wisconsin's attorney general says it makes no sense to let same-sex marriages proceed, when the courts are likely to put them on hold and in limbo.  

J.B. Van Hollen asked the federal appeals court in Chicago Monday to temporarily block last week's ruling which struck down the state's 2006 ban on gay marriages.  

Van Hollen also asked the author of the ruling -- District Judge Barbara Crabb of Madison -- told put her decision on hold until the courts settle the issue. She's being asked to consider the proposed stay at a hearing Monday afternoon.  

Van Hollen, a Republican who's in his final year in office, issued a late morning statement on the matter -- and counties' various reactions to it.

He said the U.S. Supreme Court will decide the gay marriage issue once and for all its next term. And until then, Van Hollen says there's no reason for "Wisconsin's county clerks to decide for themselves, on a county by county basis, who may and may not lawfully get married in this state."  

The attorney general was referring to the hesitation by a number of counties to grant same-sex marriage licenses -- like Dane and Milwaukee counties did for almost 300 couples this past weekend.

Outagamie County officials in Appleton were planning to wait for guidance from the state vital records office. But after 100 people refused to leave after asking for licenses, that county decided to grant them.  

Brown County officials were going to do the same -- but when they couldn't get through to the vital records office Monday, they went ahead and issued same-sex licenses. Waukesha County officials waited until late morning and proceeded as well.  

La Crosse and St. Croix counties were going to wait at least until next Monday, when Crabb gave a deadline to the ACLU to explain what they want to strike down.

(Story courtesy of Wheeler News Service)