Supreme Court Ruling Paves Way For Gay Marriage in Multiple States

The Supreme Court announced yesterday that it would refuse to review states’ bans on same-sex marriage, leaving the decision up to lower appeals courts, according to USA Today. Going forward, that means an 11 additional states will accept the practice, upping the total number to 30 states that allow same-sex marriages.

The decision to deny appeals made from Indiana, Oklahoma, Utah, Virginia and Wisconsin (which are the states affected immediately) will now allow same-sex couples in these five states to get married.

Another six states – Colorado, Kansas, North Carolina, South Carolina, West Virginia and Wyoming – could soon see the ban be struck down, but an additional court proceeding must still take place.

Though details of the settlement are not available – who voted which way? – it’s clear that the court’s decision could precipitate the legalization of gay marriage in even more states in the future, since the matter is in the hands of lower courts for now.

While today’s decision is a victory for marriage equality advocates, keep in mind that the practice will remain banned in 20 states. What seems to be the ultimate victory for advocates and allies would be a SCOTUS ruling on the constitutionality of same-sex marriage, which would span across all 50 states and tie up any current state laws concerning the matter.