After years of struggle on both sides of the issue, the question of same-sex marriage goes before the U.S. Supreme Court this week, and people waiting to attend the cases being heard have been undeterred by snow falling in the nation's capital.
People were already lining up outside the court Friday morning for the limited number of seats available Tuesday and Wednesday, when the justices will hear oral arguments on two cases.
More than three dozen people were waiting Monday to get tickets to the cases, which will be heard Tuesday and Wednesday. Many of them were holding umbrellas or had tarps over their belongings as snow fell, and one woman was wearing a trash bag from the waist down. People standing in line included college students, a substitute teacher and an Army veteran.
The first people got in line for the cases on Thursday, and some people are being paid to hold places for others. Lines frequently form in advance for the free tickets to high-profile arguments, but five days before a case is particularly early.
Meanwhile, GOP strategist Karl Rove says he can imagine a Republican candidate in the next presidential campaign supporting gay marriage.
The statement from the former adviser to President George W. Bush appears to acknowledge that opposition to gay marriage has waned in some conservative circles.
Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, announced last week that he now supports gay marriage after learning one of his sons was gay.
Rove's comment was part of a panel discussion on ABC's "This Week." He did not elaborate.