The Supreme Court has struggled with the issue of gay marriage and gay rights for nearly half a century. Here are some of the key decisions:
Baker vs. Nelson, 1972: The first Supreme Court gay marriage ruling was just a sentence long, saying that the appeal of a gay couple from Minnesota who had been turned down for a marriage license "is dismissed for lack of a substantial federal question."
Bowers vs. Hardwick, 1986: The justices by a vote of 5-4 upheld a Georgia law outlawing sodomy. The case involved a Georgia bartender, Michael Hardwick, who was arrested on suspicion of having oral sex with another man in Hardwick's bedroom. The justices said the constitutional right of privacy did not extend to homosexual sodomy.
Romer vs. Evans, 1996: In a 6-3 decision that became the precursor for later gay marriage rulings, the justices struck down a Colorado voter initiative that said no homosexual could be protected from discrimination based on their orientation.
Lawrence vs. Texas, 2003: The court, in an emotional opinion by Justice
U.S. vs. Windsor, 2013: In a landmark 5-4 decision that has been the basis for dozens of federal court rulings striking down gay marriage bans, the justices struck down a key part of the federal