U.S. Supreme Court rules to legalize same-sex marriage nationwide

Same-sex couples can now legally get married in all 50 states.

With a 5-4 vote on Friday, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled to legalize gay marriage across the entire country. The justices found that under the 14th Amendment, states must issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples and recognize same-sex unions that were legally performed in other states.

The case, Obergefell v. Hodges was brought about by lead plaintiff and Ohio resident Jim Obergefell. Obergefell wanted to be listed as the surviving spouse on his husband’s death certificate, who passed away in 2013 after suffering from ALS. Several other gay plaintiffs from Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio and Tennessee joined Obergefell.

Justice Anthony Kennedy authored the opinion and wrote that marriage is a “keystone of the nation’s social order,” and that there is “no difference between same- and opposite-sex couples with respect to this principle.”

He also noted that it is unacceptable for states to deny same-sex couples the benefits that come along with marriage, such as those involved with health insurance, healthcare decision-making privileges and even psychological health. “It is demeaning to lock same-sex couples out of a central institution of the nation’s society, for they too may aspire to the transcendent purposes of marriage.”

Many are celebrating this huge win for marriage equality today.