A state legislator in Alabama -- with backing from Gov. Bob Riley, a fellow Republican -- is organizing support for legislation to cut off state funds to public universities that offer benefits to the same-sex partners of employees, the Associated Press reported. The move follows announcements by the University of Alabama at Birmingham that it was starting domestic partner benefits October 1. The University of Alabama at Huntsville will start offering the benefits January 1. Defenders of the benefits have noted that they are key to recruiting and retaining some employees who may look elsewhere if these benefits aren't offered.