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Factbox: Supreme Court - Same-Sex Marriage


On Tuesday, lawyers will argue:
1) Must states allow same-sex couples to marry?
2) Must states recognize same-sex marriages performed in other states?

WHY THE SUPREME COURT IS INVOLVED
Marriage laws are primarily the responsibility of individual states, but there have been contradictory rulings among federal appeals courts, prompting the Supreme Court to step in and make a final ruling.

WHAT’S THE CURRENT STATE OF LAW?
Same-sex marriage is currently legal in 36 states and Washington, DC, resulting from voter initiatives, legislative action or court rulings.

WHAT’S AT STAKE:
If the court rules in favor of same-sex marriage, it will likely become the law of the land nationwide, making gay and lesbian married couples eligible for hundreds of benefits, rights and protections regardless of the state in which they live.

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