Federal Appeals Court Strikes Down Proposition 8
A federal appeals court ruled that California’s ban on same-sex marriage. It became the first in the United States to conclude that a state has no convincing legal or social justification to deny gay and lesbian couples the right to wed.
The ruling brings the issue closer to the US Supreme Court. The 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals declared that the voter-approved Proposition 8 is unconstitutional. But the 2-1 ruling has revealed a split in judicial philosophy over a state’s ability to prevent same sex marriage. This could be the preview of what’s to come in the Supreme Court.
Proposition 8 supporters said that they plan to appeal the ruling. The appeals court ruling upheld that of former San Francisco Chief US District Judge Vaughn Walker, who also struck down Proposition 8 in 2010. Gay rights advocates celebrated after the announcement of the ruling. Conservatives criticized it. Legal observers said that it would face equal support when gay marriage issue reaches the Supreme Court.
Proposition 8 supporters can ask the 9th Circuit to reopen the case with an 11-judge panel or go to the Supreme Court. It would take a long time before a final ruling will be reached. Legal observers say that it would stretch until next year.