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Prop. 8: Sacramento lawmakers denounce decision

In Sacramento, more than a dozen state lawmakers held a news conference where they reacted with anger to the court decision but vowed to overturn Proposition 8 with another ballot measure next year.

Assemblyman Tom Ammiano (D-San Francisco) denounced the court and its decision.

"They really seemed to have abandoned all moral compass around this issue," said Ammiano, who is gay. "Politically, I have hope. Personally, I am very distressed. I don’t like being a second-class citizen."

He was not sure whether the Legislature would put a measure on the ballot or whether it would be done by a petition drive.

"If they want a fight, they are going to get a fight," he added.

Sen. Mark Leno (D-San Francisco), who is also gay, called the decision "a very painful moment."

"The California Supreme Court is retreating to the dark and discriminatory days of the 20th century," Leno said. "This is a great stain on this court and it is a decision that history will not look kindly on."

He said the issue will be back on the ballot next year, "and we will prevail.’’

Leno said the court decision sends the message that "minorities do not matter.’’

"This is an assault on our constitutional democracy," Leno said.

He asked people who take to the streets to protest the court decision to act "peacefully and nonviolently.’’

Assemblyman John Perez (D-Los Angeles), who is gay, said he looks forward to having the issue put to another vote.

"As disappointed as I am with the Supreme Court’s decision with respect to Proposition 8, it is one moment in a larger struggle and I don’t feel deterred today,’’ Perez said.

Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg (D-Sacrament) said he feels "real disappointment’’ in the court’s decision.

“I view today’s decision by the California Supreme Court as a temporary setback for the cause of equality for all people,’’ Steinberg said. "History shows us that prejudice and inequality diminish with time and struggle, and so it will be the case with marriage freedom."

Assembly Speaker Karen Bass (D-Los Angeles) also felt a marriage-equality law would eventually pass.

"Today is a setback for equality in California, but it will not be the end of the story,’’ Bass said in a statement read at the news conference.

-- Patrick McGreevy

Comments () | Archives (26)

If the courts keep overruling what the majority of voters voted on, then why vote in the first place? I'm glad this was upheld!! You don't agree with the decision, move!!

These legislators appear to be idiots. They show no respect for the constitution or to the Supreme Court of the State of California. What they feel is not the constitution. The Supreme Court had a duty to interpret the constitution as to what is an amendment and what is a revision. How is a moral compass relevant to the definitions of amendment and revision? No wonder the state is in such trouble with legislators with so little common sense.

I am glad this was upheld! I do not think that gay people should be treated unfairly, but we should not make concessions for their "alternative" lifestyle. This is their choice and they know the ramifications of it. Just another example of a minority special interest group whining because they didn't get their way! As was said earlier, why vote if we are going to overturn it everytime someone disagrees! Good job CA Supreme Court!

@Marie: You need to review your US government and history.


SECTION 1. All people are by nature free and independent and have inalienable rights. Among these are enjoying and defending life and liberty, acquiring, possessing, and protecting property, and pursuing and obtaining safety, happiness, and privacy.

Marriage is a right. ALL people have inalienable rights.

The framers of our laws and constitution never intended for the majority to rule. Just because the majority votes to jail all blonde blue-eyed folks, doesn't mean it should become law. The constitution was created to protect the minority from the majority and establish individual rights, like equal protection under the law. Therefore, the court has every right to vote against the will of a majority when the majority attempts to oppress or restrict the rights of the minority.

Marie, it's a discriminatory ruling ... 52% is not much of a majority over 48% who didn't want this to pass... Also, it's in the amendment that the majority can't rule on the minorities. Think of it like this, imagine how horrible it would be if blacks or hispanics couldn't marry whites? Honestly, how horrible would it have been if the "majority" voted on an amendment that said only white people can marry white people and only black people can marry black... We are a nation that can finally see beyond the color of skin or ethnicity, now we need to become a nation that can see beyond someone preference in partners.

To Bradstreet,
First, I congratulate Proposition 8 being uphold by California Supreme Court. Since you allow discrimination at work and do not enforce California labor laws, your marriage will not be allowed and enforced by Californian Voters and High Court. Don't feel bad now, because of what goes around comes around. What a shame when you allowed Padres altered and withheld my evidence, etc. in order to protect a powerful politicians connecting employer and disregarded my basic right under State and Federal Constitution. So you and your partner don't blame the people and a High Court of California violating your basic right. Amen!

As frustrating that Prop 8 might be, the anger directed at the Supreme Court is irresponsible by our gay legislators and shame on them for pandering to the press in such a way.

Prop 8 put the restrictive definition of marriage into the California Constitution next to the equal protection clause. When this restrictive definition was just a statute, the California Supreme Court was on good progressive ground to strike it as unconstitutional. Prop 8, through a vote of the people, put the definition in the Constitution itself and the Supreme Court's hands were tied. As an institution, the Court could not declare that one section of the Constitution was more important than another or, as the gay activists were arguing, say that Prop 8 was improperly placed before voters.

The Supreme Court acted properly and the gay community, especially gay leaders in our legislature, should restrain themselves from the easy posturing. It will take real leadership and work to put the issue back on the ballot for repeal. The Supreme Court said so today: this is for the people to undo, not the Courts.

A gay observer willing to work for the overturn of Prop 8.

The back of the bus is just as good as the front! If you don't like it, move!

Shut up California. We are all tired of your constant side shows.

Ike added, I believe, "under God" to the Pledge of Allegiance.
The California Supreme Court in its 6-1 vote just struck " indvisible, with liberty and justice for all" from the Pledge.
Doesn't leave much left now, does it?
I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, one nation under God.
That'll get class started right awayl.

To Haroon, Haroon, where does it stop? Your analogies to "whites marrying blacks" is totaly ridiculous! Mixed couples (as you described them here) consist of a man and a woman - not two men or two women. No one is discriminating against gays. liek everyone else in America nowadays, we cry and whine like little babies everytime we don't get our way and that is what the gays are doing now! If this ever gets overturned, can the 'straights' (and, evidently, the majority in California) cry and whine and get it change AGAIN! Where does it end? just because more people are doing it does NOT make it right or change any law that is written. If enough adults believe it's OK to have sex with 14-year-old kids, will that be OK with you too? Again, where does it stop???

Read Moreno's concur-and-dissent: it's strikingly clear as to what this decision means.

To comments like those of Marcus, it's not just legislators and voters who strongly disagree: the lone Democrat on the Court also disagreed.

This was a decision motivated not by clear legal precedent (again, read Moreno's opinion for evidence of how the court wrongfully used non-precedents as precedents) but by cowardice. These justices can be re-called.

Let's fix Prop 8 *and* make the Court more balanced. We have just been handed a costly and lengthy set of battles where we could have been simply recognized as having protected civil rights.

The amount of resources that have and will be spent on this are such a waste of money, energy, and time, and so much for the mere "designation" of heterosexual marriage as a protected category? It's poor policy, bad judicial interpretation (read Moreno!), and a huge waste of our time and money, all in the interest of bowing to pseudo-religious bigotry.

So what will the LGBT radical agenda cry about when their prop is voted down in the next election.
They keep saying that the people will speak and make things right, well I think they HAVE spoken and it is just fine!

Marie et al (that means 'and all the others' you neanderthals), I will take you're advice... 'You don't agree with the decision, move!!'.

Us and our gay friends be going to the North east where our lives are considered equal. Your small businesses will be hurt, there will be less taxes to pay for the roads, and your entertainment options will become painfully thin. But you'll know you're better than us and that will help you sleep at night, right?

Richard La Maire - the Pledge of Allegiance does NOT say "indvisible, with liberty and justice and homosexual marriage for all who desire it". You need to study history! You know what would have happened 30-40 years ago so you should be glad that our liberal society is as tolerant as they are. You are NOT mainstream America - you are the vocal MINORITY! You are free to do whatever you desire with whomever you desire so what's your gripe? If you don't like it, do us all a favor and MOVE!!

jt you are an idiot. I guess just because this didn't go your way the judges are cowards? They simply upheld not only the law as California set it up, but also the wishes of the MAJORITY who went out and voted! Considering that many conservatives are apathetic (unfortunately) and didn't get out and vote, I think that real majority is much greater that 52% to 48%. Go ahead and cry and whine because you didn't get your way, the vote maybe worse for you the next time around!

The people have spoken twice already. If the court would have gone the other way why would anyone even bother to vote ever again.

Bystander, Did you not know that ethnicity marriages was the last thing these same churches were fighting to keep alive? Have you not heard of the ruling for interracial marriage? It's is totally ridiculous but it's the truth.

Look, you can say it's not Discrimination or segregation but the meaning for those words won't change. Discrimination is discrimination, just because you think it's not doesn't mean it's not. Discrimination is discrimination. The meaning of the word discrimination doesn't change because the bible says it okay to not allow gays to marry, or because the majority believe marriage is between a man & a woman. It's Discriminatory. And it shouldn't be encouraged, it should be yelled at for believe it's okay.

I would ask that you read a wonderful article by NY times about segregation prom in Georgia. It's a perfect example of when "tradition" destroys progress.

I believe this is what is happening here. What the majority think to be "tradition" is actually destroying the progress of America.

So by virtue of a historical fluke, some gay Californians will be barred from marriage while their gay neighbors enjoy its benefits. I can't think of a better set-up for a U.S. Supreme Court challenge. It just makes no sense. Get it together already California! You're supposed to be holding down the fort on the left coast, but lately it looks like you went on vacation and asked Texas to check up on things while you're gone.

Video response to the Prop 8 Drama


To Haroon, sorry to discriminate, it's just in some of us I guess. Don't take offense though - I discriminate against pedophiles, peeping tom's, rapists and all sorts of other groups of people as well. James also has a point about neighboring homosexuals still being "married"! Existing gay marriages should have been anulled for consistency. The court really blew this one!! As far as the Texas comment, maybe California SHOULD have Texas keeping watch. It would result in a better breed of people than you deviants!

Only in California! This is totally ridiculous! I am sorry if any of you are offended but, believe it or not, there are a few of us weirdos, wackos, hate-mongers - whatever you want to call us - who still believe in traditional marriage between a man and a woman. You know, the old boyfriend-girlfriend thing. I know that sounds odd to you but yes, some of us still prefer it that way. I also believe that there is a reason that we were made differently and a reason why a man and a woman can reproduce, unlike a man and a man or a woman and a woman. There's got to be something to it don't you think? Please don't make us out to be the weirdos and don't call the judges cowards because they do not support your deviant, abnormal lifestyle! As was said earlier, you should just be happy that this perversion is tolerated in America!

Haroon wrote that " it's a discriminatory ruling ... 52% is not much of a majority over 48% who didn't want this to pass... "

my answer to that is SO - that is how our country is and has always run. Why do you think the Democrats were so happy when Spector left the GOP - so that they could have a veto proof majority. Biden's main job is to be the tie breaker so laws in washington can be passes 50:51, In the Bush/Gore election it came down to a vote by the Supreme court where the MAJORITY of the 9 justices prevailed. OUR entire democratic government is based on Majority rule - and yes there are protections in place to see that the right of the minority is protected. That is what the state court looked at and determined that Prop 8 was both properly written, voted on, and enacted.

I hope all the LGBT groups do write a proposition, but if they try to call their unions "marriage" then it will be voted down. If they want it to pass they should agree upon another term and empower it with all the "rights" given the male/female marriage unions.
any ideas as to what to call it?
NPU - Non-Procreative Unions?
JPS - just plain stupid?

Is Haroon serious? Haroon, just exactly what are you asking for here? Would you like to see the minority vote win out because YOU did not agree with the majority?? If that's the case, CA doesn't need to vote anymore - we'll just come ask you what to do. Sorry dude, this is America - majority rules! Takes your whiny self to Massachusetts or Vermont to practice your lifestyle.

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