The US Supreme Court declared today that states may not prevent same-sex couples from marrying and that they must recognize their unions.
The decision passed with a 5-4 majority.
Swing vote Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote the majority opinion and the four justices against – Chief Justice John Roberts, Justices Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito – penned their own dissenting opinions.
“The ancient origins of marriage confirm its centrality, but it has not stood in isolation from developments in law and society,” Kennedy wrote, “a truthful declaration by same-sex couples of what was in their hearts had to remain unspoken.[…] The nature of injustice is that we may not always see it in our own times.”
In his dissenting opinion, Roberts wrote that the court had taken an “extraordinary step” in deciding not to allow states to decide the issue.