The path to the Supreme Court has been marked by many same-sex marriage victories and few defeats. Nelson , a Minnesota case filed by a gay couple seeking to marry, "for want of a substantial federal question. May 5, Hawaii Supreme Court rules that denying marriage to same-sex couples violates the Equal Protection Clause of the state Constitution. July 1, Civil unions for same-sex couples become legal in Vermont.
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Gay Marriage Is Legal in All 50 States: Supreme Court
Here are the 29 countries where same-sex marriage is officially legal | GMA
Prior to the Supreme Court's decision in Obergefell v. Hodges , U. The amendments define marriage as a union between one man and one woman and prevent civil unions or same-sex marriages from being legalized, though some of the amendments bar only the latter. The Obergefell decision in June invalidated these state constitutional amendments insofar as they prevented same-sex couples from marrying, even though the actual text of these amendments remain written into the state constitutions. Thirty-one U. Of these, ten make only same-sex marriage unconstitutional; sixteen make both same-sex marriage and civil unions unconstitutional; two make same-sex marriage, civil unions, and other contracts unconstitutional; and one is unique. Hawaii's amendment is unique in that it does not make same-sex marriage unconstitutional; rather, it allows the state to limit marriage to opposite-sex couples.
Factbox: List of states that legalized gay marriage
In the United States, same-sex marriage is recognized by the federal government and has been legalized in 36 U. Among the 38 states where same-sex marriage is legal to at least some degree, marriage is open to same-sex couples statewide in 35 of those, while it is restricted in 3 of them. Missouri recognizes same-sex marriages from out of state and same-sex marriages licensed by the City of St. Louis under a state court order ; two other jurisdictions issue such licenses as well. In Kansas , marriage licenses are available to same-sex couples in most counties, but the state does not recognize their validity.
By Reuters Staff. Reuters - The U. Before the rulings, 12 of the 50 U.