A federal judge on Tuesday struck down Nebraska's unenforceable ban on gay marriage.

U.S. District Judge Joseph Bataillon issued a permanent injunction ordering state officials to treat gay and lesbian couples the same as opposite-sex couples in matters ranging from marriage licenses to birth certificates.

Last year, the Supreme Court struck down similar bans as unconstitutional in a case challenging laws from four states.

State attorneys had argued that since the state was complying with the high court's order the injunction was not needed.

Plaintiffs in the case pointed to an attempt last year by state officials to exclude the spouses of gay couples on their children's birth certificates in arguing that the order was necessary.

Republican Governor Pete Ricketts, a defendant in the case, last year said that voters should decide the issue, not an “activist judge.”