The Supreme Court today hears a challenge to the constitutionality of the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act, which denies federal benefits to legally married same-sex couples.
The appeal involves Edith "Edie" Windsor, who was forced to assume an estate tax bill much larger than heterosexual married couples would have to pay after her decades-long same-sex partner died. The federal government did not recognize Windsor's marriage in legal terms, even though her home state of New York did.
The case comes a day after justices heard arguments challenging Californias Proposition 8, which banned same-sex marriages. Some 80 minutes of arguments left no clear picture of how things might go.
The justices are expected to rule on the cases by mid-June.
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