Your weekday morning blend from Instant Tea:
1. For at least the fifth time in the last two years, a poll has shown that a solid majority of Texans support legal recognition of same-sex relationships, whether it be marriage or civil unions. A University of Texas/Texas Tribune poll released Wednesday found that 61 percent of Texans support same-sex marriage or civil unions. The poll found that 30 percent support same-sex marriage, 31 percent support civil unions, and 33 percent oppose any form of relationship recognition, with 6 percent unsure. The poll of 800 registered voters was conducted earlier this month and has a margin of error of 3.5 percent. Previous polls dating back to 2009 have found similar support for legal recognition of same-sex relationships. Texas voters overwhelmingly approved a constitutional amendment in 2005 outlawing both same-sex marriage and civil unions.
2. El Paso’s decision to strip domestic partner benefits for city employees is a step backward and could hurt the city economically, according to a business expert and some city officials. A federal judge last week upheld the results of a November ballot initiative that will take away benefits for 19 gay and unmarried partners of city employees, as well as many others. One council member is proposing an ordinance to reinstate the benefits, while another says the city should put the issue back on the ballot this year. Read more from the El Paso Times.
3. The number of reported hate crimes in Texas increased 2.4 percent in 2010, according to KENS Channel 5 in San Antonio. The story doesn’t provide a breakdown of how many of the offenses were based on sexual orientation or other factors such as race, and hate crime statistics from 2010 haven’t been posted on the FBI website. KENS interviews the mother and sister of Troy Martinez Clattenburg, a gay man who was murdered last year after he allegedly made a pass at a straight acquaintance. Watch video below.