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Derek Kitchen, right, and Moudi Sbeity kiss as they hold their certificate of mutual commitment at their home, in Salt Lake City in April. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer, File)
Derek Kitchen, right, and Moudi Sbeity kiss as they hold their certificate of mutual commitment at their home, in Salt Lake City in April. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer, File)
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Status of gay marriage legal challenges across US

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- State same-sex marriage bans have been falling around the country since June 2013, when the nation's highest court ordered the federal government to recognize gay marriages. The remaining state bans all face legal challenges to overturn them.

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Plaintiffs Moudi Sbeity, left, and his partner Derek Kitchen, one of three couples who brought a lawsuit against Utah's gay marriage ban, celebrate as they arrive at their lawyer's office in Salt Lake City on Wednesday, June 25, 2014. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)
Plaintiffs Moudi Sbeity, left, and his partner Derek Kitchen, one of three couples who brought a lawsuit against Utah's gay marriage ban, celebrate as they arrive at their lawyer's office in Salt Lake City on Wednesday, June 25, 2014. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)
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US Appeals court: States can’t ban gay marriage

DENVER (AP) -- A federal appeals court ruled Wednesday that states must allow gay couples to marry, finding the Constitution protects same-sex relationships and putting a remarkable legal winning streak across the country one step closer to the U.S. Supreme Court.

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Frank Schaefer, above, a United Methodist Church pastor who was defrocked for officiating his son Tim's wedding to another man, has had the punishment overturned. (AP Photo/Steve Ruark, File)
Frank Schaefer, above, a United Methodist Church pastor who was defrocked for officiating his son Tim's wedding to another man, has had the punishment overturned. (AP Photo/Steve Ruark, File)
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Methodist panel overturns pastor’s defrocking

PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- A pastor who presided over his son's same-sex wedding ceremony and vowed to perform other gay marriages if asked can return to the pulpit after a United Methodist Church appeals panel on Tuesday overturned a decision to defrock him.

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Commissioners and advisors wait in line to debate same-sex marriage at  the 221st General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church at Cobo Hall, in Detroit, Thursday, June 19, 2014.  (AP Photo/The Detroit News, David Guralnick)
Commissioners and advisors wait in line to debate same-sex marriage at the 221st General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church at Cobo Hall, in Detroit, Thursday, June 19, 2014. (AP Photo/The Detroit News, David Guralnick)
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Presbyterian assembly: Gay marriage is Christian

DETROIT (AP) -- The top legislative body of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) has voted by large margins to recognize same-sex marriage as Christian in the church constitution, adding language that marriage can be the union of "two people," not just "a man and a woman."

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First Same-Sex Marriages Take Place From Midnight
Rob Stothard, Getty Images
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Judge Lets Gay Marriages Continue in Wisconsin

Gay couples in Wisconsin convinced some county clerks to give them licenses Monday so they could wed before an expected hold on a judge's decision declaring the state's gay marriage ban unconstitutional.

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Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett opposes same-sex marriage but says he will not oppose a recent court ruling upholding it. The Republican governor is facing a tough campaign for re-election this year. (AP Photo/Marc Levy, File)
Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett opposes same-sex marriage but says he will not oppose a recent court ruling upholding it. The Republican governor is facing a tough campaign for re-election this year. (AP Photo/Marc Levy, File)
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String of Legal Wins Bolsters Same-Sex Marriage

One after another and in sometimes evocative language, judges appointed by Republican and Democratic presidents are declaring it's too late to turn back on the topic of same-sex marriage.

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Just engaged Jefferson Rougeau, left, Steven Creps embrace on the steps of the state Capitol, Tuesday, May 20, 2014, in Harrisburg, Pa. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)
Just engaged Jefferson Rougeau, left, Steven Creps embrace on the steps of the state Capitol, Tuesday, May 20, 2014, in Harrisburg, Pa. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)
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Pennsylvania Won’t Appeal Same-Sex Marriage Case

Same-sex marriage won a second victory in two days in Pennsylvania, as the governor said Wednesday that he will not appeal a court decision that struck down the state's ban.

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Plaintiffs Matthew Barraza, left, looks on as his husband Tony Milner, right, holds their son Jesse, 4, following a news conference in Salt Lake City. A federal judge Monday, May 19, 2014, ordered Utah officials to recognize more than 1,000 same-sex marriages. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer, File)
Plaintiffs Matthew Barraza, left, looks on as his husband Tony Milner, right, holds their son Jesse, 4, following a news conference in Salt Lake City. A federal judge Monday, May 19, 2014, ordered Utah officials to recognize more than 1,000 same-sex marriages. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer, File)
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Utah Ordered to Recognize Over 1,000 Gay Marriages

When Matthew Barraza and Tony Milner's 5-year-old son starts kindergarten next fall, both of his fathers could finally be recognized as his legal parents.

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Deana Geiger, left, and Janine Nelson are plaintiffs in the Oregon Marriage Equality case.  (AP Photo/Steve Dykes)
Deana Geiger, left, and Janine Nelson are plaintiffs in the Oregon Marriage Equality case. (AP Photo/Steve Dykes)
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Judge Strikes Down Oregon Gay Marriage Ban

A federal judge on Monday struck down Oregon's voter-approved ban on gay marriage, saying it is unconstitutional.

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First Same-Sex Marriages Take Place From Midnight
Rob Stothard, Getty Images
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Arkansas High Court Suspends Gay Marriage Ruling

Arkansas' highest court halted the distribution of marriage licenses to same-sex couples Friday as it suspended a judge's ruling that struck down the state's same-sex marriage ban.

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