Republican Michigan Governor Rick Snyder announced Wednesday that he would not appeal a federal judge's ruling ordering officials to recognize the marriages of 300 gay and lesbian couples.

The weddings took place in four counties the day after U.S. District Judge Bernard Friedman struck down Michigan's restrictive marriage ban on March 21, a Friday. The Cincinnati-based Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals issued a stay on Friedman's ruling after the couples had exchanged vows.

While the federal government said that it will honor the marriages, Snyder refused to do so, prompting eight of the couples to file a federal lawsuit to have their marriages recognized by the state.

“The judge has determined that same-sex couples were legally married on that day, and we will follow the law and extend state marriage benefits to those couples,” Snyder said in a statement.

Without an appeal, the ruling will take effect on Thursday.

However, Snyder continues to defend Michigan's ban in the original case. After the Sixth Circuit upheld Michigan's ban and those in three other states, plaintiffs appealed to the Supreme Court, which combined the cases and is expected to render a ruling by June.

“I appreciate that the larger question will be addressed by the U.S. Supreme Court this year,” Snyder said. “I know there are strong feelings on both sides of this issue, and it's vitally important for an expedient resolution that will allow people in Michigan, as well as other states, to move forward on the other challenges we face.”

Frank Colasonti Jr., who married his husband, James B. Ryder, at the Oakland County clerk's office, told the AP that the decision “takes a great weight off our shoulders.”

“It's been anxiety-producing,” he said. “Emotional for us to not feel completely married. We've been in limbo.”