States legalizing same sex marriage
In , the U. Supreme Court ruled all state bans on same-sex marriage unconstitutional, allowing gay and lesbian couples to marry nationwide. This timeline highlights the changes in state policies leading up to that ruling, starting in — when Utah became the first state to enact a Defense of Marriage Act DOMA. Several other states previously had approved statutes defining marriage as between one man and one woman. Hawaii voters approve constitutional language allowing their legislature to determine policy on same-sex marriage, effectively overturning a series of earlier court decisions that may have required the state to allow gay and lesbian couples to wed.
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May 24 marked the first day that gay and lesbian couples in Taiwan can register to marry. Countries where same-sex marriage is legal in some areas but not nationwide were excluded. To date, only 29 out of the countries in the world have legalized same-sex marriage. While many same-sex couples have no choice but to wait for legalization — some are together for decades before they are finally able to marry — in many countries, people who can choose to get married are doing so later in life.
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This article summarizes the same-sex marriage laws of states in the United States. Via the case Obergefell v. Hodges on June 26, , the Supreme Court of the United States legalized same-sex marriage in a decision that applies nationwide, with the possible exception of American Samoa and some tribal nations.
It is only fitting to end this timeline with the following quote from that decision:. In forming a marital union, two people become something greater than once they were. As some of the petitioners in these cases demonstrate, marriage embodies a love that may endure even past death.