Quick Facts: Marriage Equality

1970
The first attempt in the U.S. by same-gender couple to receive marriage license.

1989
Denmark becomes first nation to establish “registered partnerships” for same-gender couples.

2001
The Netherlands becomes first nation to open marriage to same-gender couples.

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1,138
The number of benefits, rights and privileges afforded to married couples under federal law, according to the Government Accountability Office.

747
The number of same-gender marriage licenses issued by Mecklenburg County from October through April — nearly 20 percent of all licenses processed in that time — according to the Mecklenburg County Register of Deeds.

390,000
The number of legal same-gender marriages in the U.S., according to an April 2015 report by the Williams Institute.

600,000
The number of unmarried, same-gender couples in the U.S., according to the Williams Institute.

200,000
The number of children under 18 being raised by same-gender couples.

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$100,000+
The amount of taxpayer dollars, as of February, spent by North Carolina Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger and former North Carolina House Speaker Thom Tillis to continue defending the state’s anti-LGBT marriage amendment after it was overturned in October.

14
The number of U.S. states where marriage equality was still banned before the June 26 decision in Obergefell v. Hodges.

June 26
The day on which the U.S. Supreme Court has handed down four landmark gay rights cases: Lawrence v. Texas, decriminalizing same-gender sexual activity in 2003;United States v. Windsor, striking down portions of the federal Defense of Marriage Act; Hollingsworth v. Perry, letting lower-court decisions stand striking down California’s Proposition 8; and last month’s Obergefell v. Hodges, bringing marriage equality to all 50 states.

7
The total number of landmark Supreme Court cases — both positive and negative — affecting LGBT rights. The first was, One, Inc. v. Olesen was decided in 1958, upholding a gay publication’s First Amendment rights. The two harmful cases: Bowers v. Hardwick (1986) upholding crime against nature statutes and Boy Scouts of America v. Dale (2000) upholding the Boy Scouts of America’s right to discriminate against gay members and leaders.

3
The number of other cases consolidated into Obergefell v. Hodges — In Tanco v. Haslam, a same-gender couple, one of whom served in the U.S. Armed Forces, sought recognition of their marriage in Tennessee. In DeBoer v. Snyder, a Michigan couple sought first to challenge Michigan’s ban on same-sex adoption and then later to have their marriage recognized. In Bourke v. Beshear, a Kentucky couple sought to have their Ontario, Canada, marriage recognized in their home state.

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