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US Supreme Court hears arguments over Defense of Marriage Act

Wednesday 27 March 2013
Washington D.C., United States

Published: 12 Feb 2013 | By mariamartens and 4 others | Last updated: 13 Mar 2013
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The US Supreme Court convenes for the presentation of arguments in US v. Windsor case that challenges the Defense of Marriage Act as unconstitutional for defining marriage as the legal union between a man and a woman. 


The Act, passed by Congress in 1996, deals with federal benefits such as Social Security survivor payments and the right to file joint federal tax returns. It effectively excludes same-sex couples serving in the military from the federal benefits that heterosexual military couples are entitled to receive. 


Although outgoing Defense Secretary Leon Panetta signed an order in early 2013 allowing same-sex partners a wider use of family-oriented facilities on US bases, officials continue to withhold access to other services, such as base housing, healthcare and education. The limited benefits for same-sex couples involved in the military are due to come into effect in October 2013.


A day before, the court was scheduled to hear Hollingsworth v. Perry regarding California's Proposition 8, which seeks to uphold a state law prohibiting same-sex marriage.

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About this event
Created by mariamartensCreated by mariamartens
on Tue 12 Feb 2013
Modified by Eva HSLast modified by Eva HS
on Wed 13 Mar 2013

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Location: Washington D.C., United States
Date: Wednesday 27 March 2013
Duration: 1 day
Planning: confirmed
Ended: 576 days ago

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Ed O'Keefe

Ed O'Keefe

US correspondent

Location: Washington DC, US

Language: English

Ed O'Keefe covers Congress for The Washington Post and is author of 2chambers, a blog tracking the House and the Senate. He prev... moreEd O'Keefe covers Congress for The Washington Post and is author of 2chambers, a blog tracking the House and the Senate. He previously authored The Federal Eye, a blog keeping tabs on federal agencies, federal employees, government oversight and related issues. During the 2008 election season, Ed traveled the campaign trail as a washingtonpost.com videojournalist, blogger and contributor to the newspaper. Ed joined The Post in 2005 as a washingtonpost.com home page producer, and later served as a producer and on-air contributor to Washington Post Radio. He is a frequent guest on national radio and television outlets, including BBC, France 24, MSNBC, NPR stations, Sirius/XM POTUS and Washington Post-owned television stations. He graduated from American University with a degree in political science in 2005.

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Vivian Salama

Vivian Salama

USA correspondent

Location: New York, USA

Language: English and Arabic

Vivian Salama is a freelance journalist based in the Middle East. Ms. Salama has worked as a reporter for American, British, and... moreVivian Salama is a freelance journalist based in the Middle East. Ms. Salama has worked as a reporter for American, British, and Middle Eastern publications. Credits include NEWSWEEK magazine, The Washington Post, USA Today, The International Herald Tribune, The Middle East Times, The Middle East News Service, Al-Ahram Weekly, World Politics Review, The Jerusalem Post, The Daily Star, and Communicate magazine. Also reported from the Balkans, sub-Saharan Africa, and North and South Korea. Freelance reporter and commentator for Voice of America (VOA). Freelance Producer for ABC News. Written a variety of stories about regional and Egyptian politics, terrorist attacks, anti-Americanism in the Arab world, American policy in the Middle East, and Arab-Muslim reaction to world events. Conduct interviews in Arabic regularly. I have appeared as a political and cultural commentator on BBC World television and radio, Egyptian National Television, National Public Radio (NPR), Iran's Press TV, and South African Broadcasting Corporation television and radio.

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Al Emid

Al Emid

North America correspondent

Location: Toronto, Canada

Language: English

Al Emid has a career spanning 44 years of working on communicating ideas, concepts and information as a producer, broadcaster, j... moreAl Emid has a career spanning 44 years of working on communicating ideas, concepts and information as a producer, broadcaster, journalist with by-lines in various financial publications and part-time Business Studies Instructor in Centennial College.

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