Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster on Monday announced that he would not appeal a ruling forcing the state to recognize the out-of-state marriages of gay and lesbian couples.

Last week, Circuit Judge J. Dale Youngs sided with 10 plaintiff couples who said that Missouri's refusal to recognize their valid marriages was unconstitutional.

“The circuit court's judgment in Barrier v. Vasterling held that Missouri must recognize marriages lawfully entered into in other states,” Koster said in a statement. “We will not appeal that judgment. Our national government is founded upon principles of federalism – a system that empowers Missouri to set policy for itself, but also obligates us to honor contracts entered into in other states.”

Koster, a Democrat who has previously expressed support for marriage equality, said that not recognizing the marriages could hurt Missouri's economy.

“A consequence of this morning's ruling by the United States Supreme Court is that gay marriage will soon be legal in as many as 30 states. At a time when Missouri is competing to attract the nation's premier businesses and most talented employees, we should not demand that certain individuals surrender their marriage licenses in order to live and work among us,” Koster said.

“Missouri's future will be one of inclusion, not exclusion,” he added.

According to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, the ruling affects more than 5,400 Missouri couples who married in states with marriage equality, including neighboring Iowa and Illinois.