The high court struck down the Defense of Marriage Act and cleared the way for same-sex marriage in California Wednesday, causing celebration throughout the country.
The Supreme Court announced its 5-4 decision declaring DOMA unconstitutional first, then followed with another 5-4 decision revealing it would not rule on Proposition 8. The reasoning held that those who fought the Prop 8 challenge by taking it to the Supreme Court did not have the right to do so; state officials did, which they declined not to exercise. The justices will therefore send the case, Hollingsworth v. Perry, back to the California Supreme Court and advise it to dismiss it, according to the SCOTUSBlog.
In other words, the non-ruling left the California trial court's declaration in place – that Prop 8 is unconstitutional, according to the AP.
The rulings do leave current same-sex marriage bans in place. Justice Antonin Scalia said, "The truth is more complicated" as he read his DOMA dissent from the bench Wednesday, according to the New York Times.
While experts engage in analysis, check out these images from the historic day:
A couple celebrates in San Francisco.
Same-sex couple Lisa Kirk, left, and Lena Brancatelli speak with Brancatelli's mother on the phone after learning the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling on gay marriage Wednesday at their home in San Jose, Calif.
Supporters embrace outside the Supreme Court Wednesday.
Phyllis Lyon, pictured, hugs attorney Kate Kendall after the Supreme Court decision clearing the way for same-sex marriage in California. Lyon and her late partner Del Martin, a gay activist icon, became the first officially married same-sex couple in California after the state's Supreme Court declared gay marriage legal in 2008.
Michael Knaapen, left, and his husband John Becker outside the Supreme Court Wednesday.
Executive Director of the The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Community Center Glennda Testone, center, celebrates with staff Wednesday.
A couple reacts upon hearing the U.S. Supreme Court struck down DOMA while at City Hall Wednesday in San Francisco.
(From left) Plaintiff couples Kris Perry, Sandy Steier, Paul Katami and Jeff Zarillo arrive at the U.S. Supreme Court building.
Supporters Brian Sprague, left, and Charlie Ferrusi hold a Human Rights flag outside U.S. Supreme Court building.
Vin Testa awaits rulings on DOMA and Prop 8 outside the U.S. Supreme Court building Wednesday.