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The Boston Globe

Nation

Supreme Court rulings boost gay marriage

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court overturned a nearly two-decades old federal law Wednesday defining marriage as a union between one man and one woman, a landmark decision that qualifies gay couples for federal benefits and underscores a rapid shift in American acceptance.

In a parallel case, the court cleared the way for same-sex marriage in California but dashed the hopes of gay marriage supporters that it would establish the constitutional right for gays and lesbians to marry in all states.

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