Judge Rules Prop 8 Unconstitutional
Special Report - August 5, 2010
Homosexual activists across the nation are celebrating after a federal judge in California ruled yesterday that the state’s constitutional amendment defining marriage as one man and one woman is unconstitutional. The long-awaited decision by U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker in Perry v. Schwarzeneggera case involving a challenge to Proposition 8, the marriage amendment that was adopted by a majority of Californians in November 2008did not come as a surprise to proponents or supporters of Proposition 8. Both sides expect the case to go all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court.
In his 136-page ruling, Judge Walker argued that “Because Proposition 8 disadvantages gays and lesbians without any rational justification, Proposition 8 violates the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.” Judge Walker continued, “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.”
Shortly after the decision was issued, the Alliance Defense Fund (ADF) and other attorneys representing ProtectMarriage.com announced that they will seek an appeal of Judge Walker’s ruling with the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. “We will certainly appeal this disappointing decision. Its impact could be devastating to marriage and the democratic process,” ADF Senior Counsel Brian Raum said in a press release. “It’s not radical for more than 7 million Californians to protect marriage as they’ve always known it. What would be radical would be to allow a handful of activists to gut the core of the American democratic system and, in addition, force the entire country to accept a system that intentionally denies children the mom and the dad they deserve.”
Maggie Gallagher, chair of the National Organization for Marriage (NOM), responded to the decision by calling Judge Walker’s opinion “biased.” Writing in the San Francisco Chronicle, Gallagher noted, “Judge Walker's ruling proves, however, that the American people were and are right to fear that too many powerful judges do not respect their views, or the proper limits of judicial authority…. Judge Walker is off-base: same-sex marriage is not a civil right, it is a civil wrong. The Supreme Court and Congress will reject his biased view.”
Despite the ruling invalidating Proposition 8, marriage licenses will not be issued to homosexual couples in California right away. That is because in a separate order also issued August 4, Judge Walker temporarily delayed his ruling so that he could consider a request from Proposition 8 defenders to stay his order while the decision is appealed. In the order, he said he will hear arguments from both sides on whether or not he should suspend his ruling during the appeal process at hearing on August 6.
The Issue That Will Not Go Away - FNC Spring 2010
California Court Upholds Marriage Amendment - May 26, 2009
California Court To Rule On Proposition 8 - November 24, 2008
California Amendment Not Retroactive - August 8, 2008
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