Gay rights activists celebrated in Washington state today as a law allowing same-sex couples to wed came into force.
The measure was approved by 54 per cent of voters in a referendum and was signed in by Governor Chris Gregoire on Wednesday.
Gay and lesbian couples began picking up wedding licences today and the first marriages are expected to take place on Sunday.
"For many years we've said 'one more step'," Ms Gregoire said.
"And this is our last step for marriage equality in the state of Washington."
Heather Kawmoto and Kay Lancaster, a couple who have been together for 14 years and have a nine-year-old daughter, said marriage was "something we've hoped and dreamed of.
"We never knew we'd be able to say those things to each other."
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