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Same-Sex Marriage And A Week Of Confusion

The Supreme Court's actions earlier in the week knocked down bans across the country, but left many same-sex couples in unclear territory.
Posted at 11:19 PM, Oct 11, 2014

This past week might've been the most dramatic — and confusing — time for advocates of same-sex marriage in recent memory. 

The week began with the Supreme Court letting appeals court rulings stand allowing same-sex marriage in Indiana, Oklahoma, Utah, Virginia and Wisconsin. But that was just the beginning. 

Both Idaho and North Carolina saw bans fall Friday. N.C. Governor Pat McCrory released a statement saying the state would comply with the court's ruling. 

But Idaho's transition was a bit less seamless. After a San Francisco federal appeals court struck down bans in Idaho and Nevada, Idaho's attorney general filed a request to the Supreme Court asking for an immediate stay of the appeals court ruling. 

Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy granted that stay, then the Court reversed course Friday with a two-sentence order void of any explanation. It simply reads, "The application for stay presented to Justice Kennedy and by him referred to the Court is denied."

Things were even more confusing in Nevada. The issuance of marriage licenses were put on hold because of Justice Kennedy's Idaho stay — but Nevada was accidentally included in that order, with the Court's public information officer saying, "The order erroneously included the docket number for the Nevada case." Whoops.

Kansas saw a reversal of fortunes all within a 24-hour period Friday. The state saw its first same-sex marriage only to have the Kansas Supreme Court hit the pause button later that day after the state's attorney filed a petition. Couples can still apply for licenses while the legal battle is being resolved. 

Also this week, same-sex couples in West Virginia began receiving marriage licenses — without any of the aforementioned issues. So far, same-sex marriage is allowed in 26 states the District of Columbia. 

This video includes images from Getty Images.