Cincinnati rally precedes gay marriage arguments

CINCINNATI (AP) — Hundreds of gay marriage supporters have rallied in Cincinnati as a federal court prepares to hear arguments on challenges to gay marriage bans in four states.

The supporters gathered Tuesday night at a city park near Cincinnati's riverfront, cheering as speakers called for equality for all. One gay couple in attendance carried a sign that read: "End our 37-year engagement at the altar."

The speakers included former Democratic Gov. Ted Strickland and a Cincinnati councilman.

The supporters plan to rally again Wednesday outside the federal courthouse during a hearing on whether gay and lesbian couples have a right to marry. A three-judge panel of the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals will hear arguments on challenges to state bans on gay marriage in Ohio, Kentucky, Michigan and Tennessee.

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