Updated: 6/26/13 at 5:52 PM – This post will be updated throughout the day as the site’s contributors offer their own thoughts on the ruling.
The Supreme Court has struck down the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) in a 5-4 ruling, declaring it unconstitutional on the grounds that a marriage recognized in a couple’s home state should also be recognized under federal law.
The law, originally enacted under President Clinton in 1996, barred married same-sex couples from receiving benefits under federal law.
The majority opinion was delivered by Justice Kennedy, who was joined by Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Elena Kagan, Stephen Breyer and Sonia Sotomayor. Dissenting opinions were filed by Chief Justice John Roberts and Justices Antonin Scalia and Samuel Alito.
The court also ruled on Proposition 8, the measure which defined marriages in California as being between a man and a woman. After being voted into law in 2008, Prop 8 was struck down in a California district court. In a 5-4 decision once again, the Justices determined that the petitioners had no standing to appeal the case.