A federal judge on Wednesday overturned a California ban on same-sex marriage, ruling that the Proposition 8 ballot initiative was unconstitutional, but a pending appeal of the landmark ruling could prevent gay weddings from resuming in the state any time soon. The ruling by U. District Judge Vaugh Walker, one of three openly gay federal judges in the country, gave opponents of the controversial Proposition 8 ballot a major victory. Gay couples waving rainbow and American flags outside the courthouse cheered, hugged and kissed as word of the ruling spread.
Is Same-Sex Marriage Legal in California?
Is Same-Sex Marriage Legal in California? - Pride Legal
The California Supreme Court, striking down two state laws that had limited marriages to unions between a man and a woman, ruled on Thursday that same-sex couples have a constitutional right to marry. The 4-to-3 decision, drawing on a ruling 60 years ago that struck down a state ban on interracial marriage, would make California the second state, after Massachusetts, to allow same-sex marriages. The decision, which becomes effective in 30 days unless the court grants a stay, was greeted with celebrations at San Francisco City Hall, where thousands of same-sex marriages were thrown out by the courts four years ago. It was denounced by religious and conservative groups that promised to support an initiative proposed for the November ballot that would amend the California Constitution to ban same-sex marriages and overturn the decision. Same-sex marriage has been a highly contentious issue in presidential and Congressional elections, but it was not immediately clear what role the ruling would have this year. The Democratic and Republican candidates for president have all said they believe marriage should be between a man and a woman, but Republicans could use a surge in same-sex marriages in the most populous state to invigorate conservative voters. Given the historic, cultural, symbolic and constitutional significance of marriage, Chief Justice Ronald M.
LGBT rights in California
For many years, same-sex marriage has been a hot topic of endless debate. Supporters of same-sex marriage say that a relationship and subsequent marriage between two people of the same sex is natural and normal. These supporters believe that a person does not choose to be gay and is instead born this way.
The brief marked the first time that the Obama administration has come out in court against Prop 8 and the first time it has argued against state gay marriage ban before the Supreme Court. The administration's argument also could reverberate beyond California. If the Supreme Court accepts the arguments in the brief, it could lay the groundwork toward undermining laws against gay marriage in several other states. Proposition 8 thus violates equal protection," wrote Solicitor General Donald B. Verrilli Jr.