TODAY   |  June 26, 2013

SCOTUS expected to reveal same-sex marriage decisions

NBC’s Pete Williams reports from the Supreme Court where the justices are expected to hand down decisions in two landmark same-sex marriage cases related to the Defense of Marriage Act and California’s Proposition 8.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> the supreme court where they'll issue their biggest decision on same-sex marriage.

>> pete, we have two cases here. one, california's ban on same-sex marriage, or federal law known as doma or defense of marriage act . what's at stake?

>> whether same sex can resume there. it started in 2008 and was blocked by prop 8. so they'll determine whether marriage can start up there again. on the federal law , the defense of marriage act , it blocks the federal government from recognizing the validity of same-sex marriage where they are allowed in 12 states and here in the district of columbia and they'll decide whether it's constitutional.

>> sometimes we get decisions that usher in sweeping change. on other decisions they're based more on technicalities. what are we expecting?

>> the prop 8 case maybe disposed on. they may say the people that appealed it here did not have the proper legal footing in the first place. but it does seem likely that they will decide the doma case on the merits. if they strike it down, the federal government has to recognize marriages in the state where is they're allowed but nothing about whether the other states have to permit same-sex marriage.

>> thank you. nbc news will have live coverage of the decisions as they happen this morning.