A U.S. Senate committee on Thursday is expected to vote on a bill that would repeal the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), the 1996 law that bars federal agencies and the military from recognizing the legal marriages of gay and lesbian couples.
The law also allows states to ignore the marriages of gay couples.
A majority of the members on the Senate Judiciary Committee support the bill, including its chairman, Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy, making passage an almost foregone conclusion. Senator Dianne Feinstein, a Democrat from California, sponsored the bill in the Senate.
But the issue is a non-starter in the House, where its speaker, John Boehner, a Republican from Ohio, has approved a budget of up to $1.5 million to defend the law in court.
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