The dual victories the Supreme Court handed to gay-marriage supporters Wednesday seemed to temporarily shift the focus of the fight from Washington to the states.
For instance, one of the more notable reactions to the Supreme Court decisions overturning the Defense of Marriage Act and upholding a lower court ruling that blocked California's Proposition 8 from taking effect came from the American Civil Liberties Union.
Update, June 26:This post was originally published back in April of this year but we decided to rerun it in light of today's decision by the U.S. Supreme Court.
Last summer, my father-in-law entered the hospital in Germany. My wife, Lu Mueller-Kaul, desperately wanted to be with him. But she was in this country on a complicated visa that forbids her from returning if she leaves. She stayed as her father suffered, cursing the unfair system.
Edith Windsor is mobbed by journalists and supporters as she leaves the Supreme Court on March 27, when the court heard oral arguments in the case that challenged the constitutionality of the Defense of Marriage Act.
Jose Antonio Machado was brought to Miami as an undocumented immigrant from Matagalpa, Nicaragua, when he was six years old. He grew up here with his mother, Melba, also an indocumentada, until she was deported two years ago after being pulled over for a traffic violation.
“I expected her home at 11:15 p.m. that night,” says Machado, now an 18-year-old who graduated this month from Miami Senior High School. “Eventually I fell asleep. The next morning I realized she wasn’t there.”
Plaintiff Edith Windsor of New York waves to supporters in front of the Supreme Court in Washington after the court heard arguments on her Defense of Marriage Act case.
Credit Mladen Antonov / AFP/Getty Images
Michael Knaapen (left) and his husband, John Becker, embrace outside the Supreme Court after news of the justices' ruling. DOMA prohibited married gay couples from receiving the same federal benefits that straight couples are granted.
Credit Mark Wilson / Getty Images
The court also cleared the way for gay marriages to resume in California. One of the attorneys in that case, David Boise (center), speaks as he's surrounded by plaintiffs in the case, couples Paul Katami (from left) and Jeff Zarrillo, and Sandy Stier and Kris Perry.
Credit Kevork Djansezian / Getty Images
Brandon Benoit, Martha Acevedo (left) and Briana Castaneda celebrate the Supreme Court rulings at Equality California, a nonprofit civil rights organization that advocates for the rights of LGBT people.
Credit Carolyn Kaster / AP
Allan Hoyle of North Carolina (center) protests gay marriage outside the Supreme Court.
Credit Justin Sullivan / Getty Images
At San Francisco's City Hall, supporters of gay marriage celebrate the Supreme Court DOMA ruling.
Credit Mladen Antonov / AFP/Getty Images
The Supreme Court on Wednesday struck down the federal Defense of Marriage Act, or DOMA, in a major victory for supporters of same-sex marriage, who cheered the ruling outside the court.
How valuable are state-managed conservation lands? It's a question the South Florida Water Management District has put to the public in a multi-month assessment of fee-owned lands throughout the state.
In a 5-4 decision announced today, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down Section 4 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, which required five Florida counties to get pre-clearance from the U.S. Department of Justice before altering their voting procedures.
Reaction was swift across social media platform Twitter:
By a 5-4 decision, the Supreme Court has struck down a key provision of the landmark 1965 Voting Rights Act that establishes a formula to identify states that may require extra scrutiny by the Justice Department regarding voting procedures.
WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange (left) and Ecuadorian Foreign Minister Ricardo Patino appear on a window of the Ecuadorian Embassy in London on June 16. Assange has been living at the embassy for the past year. Patino announced Sunday that Ecuador would consider giving asylum to former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.
Indigenous leaders from Brazil's Terena tribe attend a meeting with government officials in the capital, Brasilia, on June 6. Brazil's Indians have been demanding greater land rights and are increasingly coming into conflict with large ranchers and farmers.
It was once the cattle farm of a former congressman, but now his stately house in the western Brazilian state of Mato Grosso do Sul is a burned-out shell. Thatch huts are being built in the shade of flowering palm trees. Once the purview of one farmer's family, it now is occupied by dozens of indigenous ones.