Barney Frank 'pleased but not surprised' by Defense of Marriage Act decision

"I was hoping that it would happen, it's happening more quickly than I wanted it to, not as quickly as it should" Frank, who is openly gay, said Thursday on CNN. "We're talking about a prejudice that never had any rational basis in the first place. I think what's happening is that reality defeats prejudice.

"When we talk honestly about our sexuality it's called coming out — when the heterosexual majority does it it's called talking," he continued. "And we all talk about our sexuality and that's helped defeat the prejudice. Marriage is an example."

A federal appeals court on Thursday struck down the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), a federal law that defines marriage as being between a man and a woman.

In the ruling, the 1st U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Boston said the law discriminates against gay couples by not giving them the same rights and privileges as heterosexual couples and is unconstitutional.

Appeals Court Judge Michael Boudin, an appointee of former President George H.W. Bush, wrote the unanimous decision, but acknowledged the issue would likely end up before the Supreme Court.

“Supreme Court review of DOMA is highly likely,” Boudin wrote, adding that “we have done our best to discern the direction of these precedents, but only the Supreme Court can finally decide this unique case.”