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Two government agencies faced off Tuesday afternoon before a federal appeals court over whether federal civil rights law, as written, includes protection against discrimination based on sexual orientation.

Zarda v. Altitude Express was argued in front of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in Manhattan, seated en banc –and made for some colorful exchanges between judges and attorneys representing the U.S. Department of Justice and the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, respectively, which are pitted against each other in arguing this case.

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