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The New York federal appeals court ruling Monday that said sexual orientation should be protected under federal civil rights laws sharpened the divide among courts and set the stage for a U.S. Supreme Court fight.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit’s decision added to momentum for the re-examination of interpretations of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act. The court, sitting en banc, largely embraced the view of the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission that workplace sexual orientation is protected under anti-discrimination laws.

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