Chicago appeals court reviews Indiana, Wisconsin same-sex marriage bans

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A federal appeals court hearing in Chicago wrapped up shortly before noon Tuesday and a panel of judges will now decide whether same-sex couples in Indiana and Wisconsin will have the right to get married.

The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals, in Chicago, heard oral arguments today on whether laws in those states violate the U.S. Constitution.

The main courtroom at the Dirksen Federal Building was filled to capacity.  An overflow crowd was moved to an auxiliary courtroom, which was nearly filled.

Gay rights activists argue that marriage bans deny gay couples state and federal legal protections and benefits.

19 states, including Illinois, now allow same-sex marriage.

Legal experts closely watching today's proceeding believe the issue ultimately will be decided by the U.S. Supreme Court.

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