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Senate Passes Gay Rights Bill Banning Workplace Discrimination

Rainbow flags fly on the corner of Castro Street and Market Street in San Francisco, Thursday, June 27, 2013. The Supreme Court issued rulings Wednesday that struck down a provision of a federal law that denies federal benefits to married gay couples and also cleared the way for state laws that recognize marriage equality. Credit: AP

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Senate has approved a bill outlawing workplace discrimination against gay, bisexual and transgender Americans.

The vote reflected the nation's rapidly evolving attitude toward gay rights nearly two decades after Congress rejected same-sex marriage. The final tally was 64-32.

Despite the bipartisan vote, the measure's chances in the House are dim. Speaker John Boehner calls the shots, and he opposes the bill.

Gay rights advocates hailed Senate passage as a major victory in a year of significant change.

The Supreme Court in June affirmed gay marriage and granted federal benefits to legally married same-sex couples. Illinois is on the verge of becoming the 15th state to legalize gay marriage along with the District of Columbia.

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