In our news wrap Friday, the Supreme Court ruled that marriage is a legal right for gay couples in the United States. Also, it was widely reported that police killed an escaped murderer in Northern New York state, three weeks after he broke out of prison with another inmate.
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It will now be the law everywhere in the United States. The Supreme Court ruled 5-4 today that same-sex couples have the right to marry. Thirty-six states and the District of Columbia already recognize that right. Under this decision, the remaining 14 states have to drop their bans on the practice, an outcome that sparked widely varying reactions outside the court.
JIM OBERGEFELL, Lead Plaintiff:
Today’s ruling from the Supreme Court affirms what millions across this country already know to be true in our hearts. Our love is equal, that the four words etched onto the front of Supreme Court, equal justice under law, apply to us too.
JENNIFER MARSHALL, Heritage Foundation:
The Supreme Court has imposed same-sex marriage on the nation. And this decision is — they have issued their decision, but it doesn’t end the conversation about what marriage is and why it matters for children, for the future of our society. And we will be continuing to stand for marriage as the union of a man and a woman, and to stand for the freedom to speak and to act consistent with that understanding of marriage.
Several religious organizations also criticized the decision, as did some Republican presidential candidates.
But, at the White House, President Obama said it’s a day when justice arrives like a thunderbolt.
PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA:
This decision affirms what millions of Americans already believe in their hearts. When all Americans are treated as equal, we are all more free. There’s so much more work to be done to extend the full promise of America to every American, but today we can say in no uncertain terms that we have made our union a little more perfect.
News of the decision set off celebrations by gay marriage advocates in a number of cities. And at least eight states began issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples. We will explore the Supreme Court’s decision in detail after the news summary.
There’s word police have killed an escaped murderer in Northern New York state after a three week manhunt. It’s widely reported that Richard Matt was shot dead near Malone, not far from the Canadian border. Police are still pursuing David Sweat, who escaped with Matt. Hundreds of officers have been searching for the pair. The hunt intensified in the last few days after they found items that the two men had left behind.
Terror attacks left a bloody toll around the world today; 37 people died when a gunman opened fire at a beach in Tunisia; 27 more were killed in a suicide bombing in Kuwait. And a lone attacker in France tried to blow up a gas plant. We will have a full report on all of this later in the program.
In Syria, reports say Islamic State gunmen killed at least 145 civilians in a new round of fighting. A Syrian human rights group says the massacre followed an attack on the Kurdish-held town of Kobani on the Turkish border. Fighting continued there as Kurdish fighters surrounded the ISIS gunmen.
Al-Shabaab militants in Somalia have staged a new strike on African Union troops. Local officials say the militants exploded a car bomb and stormed a remote base, killing 25 soldiers. Al-Shabaab has vowed to step up attacks during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, now under way.
And back in this country, Wall Street failed to find much direction. The Dow Jones industrial average gained 56 points to close nearly 17950, but the Nasdaq fell 30 points and the S&P 500 lost less than a point. For the week, all three indexes were down a small fraction.