U.S. Supreme Court Will Hear Oral Arguments on Proposition 8 in March
The U.S. Supreme Court announced today that it will hear oral arguments for the federal Proposition 8 lawsuit on Tuesday, March 26 -- followed up the next day with arguments on the constitutionality of the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA).
So in a little over two months, the question of legalized gay marriage in California -- and possibly the entire country -- will be handed over to the highest court in the land.
Proposition 8 and DOMA have already been found unconstitutional by federal judges, and those rulings have been appealed by gay marriage opponents.
Proposition 8 was passed by California voters a little over four years ago in 2008. Before that, gay marriage in California had been legal for several months. An estimated 18,000 gay couples wed during that brief window.
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DOMA was signed into law by President Bill Clinton in 1996 when he was facing a re-election campaign. The federal law designates marriage as a union between one man and one woman.
While a state government may acknowledge the marriage of a gay couple and extend certain benefits and protections, the federal government does not.
By hearing oral arguments for both cases, the U.S. Supreme Court appears poised to make a definitive statement on the legality of gay marriage in the United States.
Los Angeles-based American Foundation for Equal Rights organized and funded the federal Proposition 8 lawsuit.
Contact Patrick Range McDonald at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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