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Supreme Court Rules that Gay Couples Are Eligible for Benefits and Paves the Way for Gay Marriage in California

In two consecutive 5-4 rulings, the U.S. Supreme Court  today stuck down the Defense of Marriage Act  (DOMA ) and ruled against supporters of Proposition 8, paving the way for gay couples to marry in California. 


As of today the federal government will recognize legally married same-sex couples at the federal level, granting them all the benefits and privileges that the federal government confers to heterosexual spouses, including the right of non-American spouses to apply for a green card or citizenship.


On Proposition 8, the Court found that those defending Prop 8 do not have legal standing, meaning that this ruling will only impact only the state of California, so the majority did not endorse a fundamental right for gay people to marry.


The ACLU released this statement on their website: 

Today, thanks to the courage and tenacity of our heroic client Edie Windsor, the Supreme Court struck down the Defense of Marriage Act.  Tomorrow, we get back to work.  Our goal is simple: win the freedom to marry for same-sex couples all across America.


The Human Rights Campaign issued a statement on their website as well, "urging the administration to broadly implement the decision, provide guidance to federal agencies and married couples about access to federal rights and benefits, and take whatever further action is necessary to ensure that the largest number of lesbian and gay married couples are able to access the widest array of benefits and protections under federal law."