A three-judge panel of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled today that gay marriages cannot resume in California until after the court hears an appeal from the groups who fought to uphold Proposition 8.
The appeals court scheduled a hearing on the appeal for the week of Dec. 6, and ordered the sides to address the issue of who has standing to appeal the ballot measure that barred gay couples from marrying in California.
U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker struck down Prop 8 in a landmark ruling Aug. 4, holding that the ban on gay marriage violates the U.S. Constitution's guarantees of due process and equal protection.
On Thursday, Walker declined to permanently stay his ruling during the appeals process, but held that gay marriages could not resume in California before Aug. 18, giving the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals time to rule on a possible stay.
A three-judge panel of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals rules that gay marriages cannot resume in California until after the court hears appeal.
Proposition 8, the ballot measure that halted same-sex marriage in California, is unconstitutional, U.S. District Court Chief Judge Vaughn Walker ruled this afternoon.
Here is the conclusion of the 135-page ruling:
Proposition 8 fails to advance any rational basis in singling out gay men and lesbians for denial of a marriage license. Indeed, the evidence shows Proposition 8 does nothing more than enshrine in the California Constitution the notion that opposite-sex couples are superior to same-sex couples. Because California has no interest in discriminating against gay men and lesbians, and because Proposition 8 prevents California from fulfilling its constitutional obligation to provide marriages on an equal basis, the court concludes that Proposition 8 is unconstitutional.
The case, Perry v. Schwarzenegger, is expected to be appealed and eventually reach the U.S. Supreme Court. A stay on marriages has been issued as the case continues through the appeals process.