Marriage Equality - Obergefell v. Hodges

On June 26, 2015, the legal question of same-sex marriage was settled with the Supreme Court's decision in Obergefell v. Hodges, 576 U.S. ___; 135 S.Ct 2584; 192 L.Ed.2d 609 (2015).  The Supreme Court's ruling in Obergefell held that the U.S. Constitution requires all states to recognize a marriage between two people of the same sex.  Additionally, all states must issue marriage licenses for same-sex couple who apply for licenses.  For same-sex couples where married in another state allowing same-sex marriage, their marriage will now be recognized under state law.

The majority opinion, which was authored by Justice Kennedy, held that same-sex couples have a fundamental right to marry, and that the 14th Amendment forbade states from banning or refusing to recognize same-sex mariages.

"Especially against a long history of disapproval of their relationships, this denial to same-sex couples of the right to marry works a grave and continued harm," Kennedy wrote for a five-justice majority.  "The imposition of this disability on gays and lesbians serves to disrepsect and subordinate them.  And the Equal Protection Clause, like the Due Process Clause, prohibits this unjustified infringement of the fundamental right to marry."