Supreme Court Orders States to Recognize Same-Sex Marriage
Friday, June 26, 2015
Posted by: Amber Javaid
The Supreme Court declared by a margin of 5 to 4 Friday that states must license same-sex marriages and recognize similar unions from other states, effectively ending a long legal battle over the marriage rights for gays and lesbians.
“No union is more profound than marriage, for it embodies the highest ideals of love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice, and family. In forming a marital union, two people become something greater than they once were,” wrote Justice Anthony Kennedy, who delivered the opinion for the court. “[The challengers] ask for equal dignity in the eyes of the law. The Constitution grants them that right.”
The high court’s historic ruling in Obergefell v. Hodges will expand the recognition of gay marriages beyond the 37 states and Washington, D.C., where it is currently legal, to all 50, affording same-sex couples the same rights and benefits long conferred on heterosexual unions.
Already, couples in the remaining states that had not yet recognized gay marriage have been planning weddings, and research from the Williams Institute indicates the ruling may even inspire couples who already could legally marry in other states to tie the knot as well.
Speaking from the White House, President Obama praised the decision, arguing that it was a sign of progress.