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In 1996, Rep. John Lewis Delivered An Impassioned Speech Denouncing A Federal Ban On Gay Marriage

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Nearly 20 years before the Supreme Court would strike down the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and make marriage equality the official the law of the land, the late Rep.

John Lewis (D-GA) delivered an impassioned speech to his fellow lawmakers, imploring them to vote against the federal law that would prohibit married gay couples from receiving the same federal benefits that straight couples are granted. “Let me say to the gentleman that when I was growing up in the south during the 1940s and the 1950s, the great majority of the people in that region believed that black people should not be able to enter places of public accommodation, and they felt that black people should not be able to register to vote, and many people felt that was

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