Opponents of gay marriage in the District of Columbia say they'll press on despite a recent Supreme Court loss.

On Tuesday, the Supreme Court rejected an appeal from gay marriage foes hoping to put the city's gay marriage law up for a vote.

The court announced without comment that it would not hear Bishop Harry Jackson's challenge to a D.C. Board of Elections and Ethics ruling that said putting the question of marriage up for a vote would violate the city's Human Rights Act (HRA) that prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation. In rejecting the referendum, the board said it would, if approved, authorize “discrimination in contravention of the HRA.”

Opponents had argued that the board overstepped its authority and that the citizens should have final say on such matters.

Jackson and his supporters took their case to the Supreme Court after the D.C. Court of Appeals said that the board was within the law in making such a decision. Jackson, a minister at the Hope Christian Church in Belstville, said the court's split decision (5 to 4) gave him reason to hope.

The National Organization for Marriage (NOM), the nation's most vociferous opponent of gay marriage, says it will work with Congress to strike down the law.

"With a pro-marriage majority in the new Congress we will explore a number of avenues to force the District to fulfill their constitutional responsibility to voters,” NOM President Brian Brown said in a statement. “As the four Court of Appeal justices who dissented in this case made clear, the District of Columbia owes it to the voters to allow them to decide the critical issue of marriage which has existed since before there was a District of Columbia.”

Brown went on to chide lawmakers who approved the law.

“In order to curry favor with the same-sex marriage special interest group, members of the City Council have turned their backs on their own constituents,” he said. “It is ironic that these same council members champion the right of District voters to be heard in national elections but then deny those same residents the right to vote on the definition of marriage. We will press our belief with Congress that the constitution of the District requires that voters be allowed to decide this important issue."