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“What we saw in California was devastating,” said Council member Tommy Wells, Ward 6 Democrat. “Here in D.C., this issue belongs to all of us. The fight will continue, and we will have to be vigilant.”

Bishop Harry Jackson, head of the pro-traditional-marriage group Stand for Marriage DC, has been appealing to Republicans and conservative Democrats on Capitol Hill to strike the bill down.

Mr. Jackson’s group has filed court challenges related to the same-sex marriage issue and has said “nothing is off the table” in terms of legal strategies against the bill.

Republicans in Congress have said they lack the votes to successfully oppose the bill.