US government plans to expand recognition of same-sex marriages nationwide

A memo to the Department of Justice today is expected to recognize same-sex unions under federal law, CNN reports.

For those fighting for same-sex marriage, it's one more step towards equality.

The new policies are focused on federal benefits. These include including spousal rights associated with prison visits, testifying against a spouse in court, bankruptcies and survivor benefits for the spouses of police and firefighters killed in action, CNN reports.

The new rules will even apply in the 34 states where same-sex marriage is not recognized by the state government. Critics reportedly consider that an overreach by the federal government.

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