On Wednesday, the First U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals heard arguments on the constitutionality of the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act. The law allows each state to define marriage for itself but also permits states to deny recognition of marriages that don't meet its definition.
The statute also makes clear that the U.S. government defines marriage only as the union of one man and one woman. In 2010, a federal judge declared the law unconstitutional, asserting that it discriminated against legally married gay couples because they were denied federal benefits that traditionally married couples in their state received.
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Mathew Staver is the founder and chairman of Liberty Counsel. He says the lower court's decision was based on very weak reasoning and that there are many things a state government may allow people to do that the federal government does not. He says the federal position of only recognizing marriages between a man and a woman proves that no discrimination is occurring. Staver also scolds the Obama administration for refusing to defend the law and tells us whether this could be the next big showdown at the U.S. Supreme Court.