On June 26, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court came to a 5-4 decision in the
Obergefell v. Hodges
case, declaring that the Fourteenth Amendment requires every state to
both grant and recognize same-sex marriages.
According to the
case syllabus, the following is now upheld:
“The right to marry is a fundamental right inherent in the liberty
of the person, and under the Due Process and Equal Protection Clauses
of the Fourteenth Amendment couples of the same-sex may not be deprived
of that right and that liberty…The State laws challenged by the
petitioners in these cases are held invalid to the extent they exclude
same-sex couples from civil marriage on the same terms and conditions
as opposite-sex couples. Pp. 22–23”
The vote was narrow, but it will now lift same-sex marriage bans in the
14 states that still had them.
This ruling affects the following states:
- South Dakota
- North Dakota
- Most of Missouri
With this new decision, same-sex couples are now able to be married no
matter where they live. President Barack Obama has called it “justice
that arrives like a thunderbolt” and within hours of the decision
becoming public, county clerks were issuing marriage licenses to same-sex
couples in numerous states throughout the country.