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Ecstatic reactions to Prop. 8 ruling in West Hollywood

The reaction to the Proposition 8 ruling Wednesday was exuberant and swift along Santa Monica Boulevard in West Hollywood.

“I think it’s great,” said Steven Tobey, 46, of West Hollwyood, who was sitting outside a French bakery when he saw the news on his phone. “I’m not highly political, but I think it’s a civil rights issue.”

Tobey was legally married in 2008 to his partner of 11 years.

“It was something we wanted to do because we could,” he said. “We wanted to be part of the movement.”

Tobey said he fears the battle will go all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Tom Carpenter, 62, and Art Andrade, 52, were finishing lunch at a sushi restaurant in West Hollywood when they heard the news.

After 18 years together, they were legally married in San Francisco after Mayor Gavin Newsom began allowing same-sex unions. Later, they held another marriage ceremony in a West Hollywood park and had a reception at their house in the Hollywood Hills with wedding cake and champagne.

“I’m ecstatic and very happy,” Andrade said. “But I’m also concerned how long this happiness will last.”

Carpenter, an attorney, said he was overjoyed but had not yet read the decision.

“I think it’s important that his decision is structured in such a way that it’s bullet-proof,” Carpenter said. “It’s going to end up in the Supreme Court and then we’ve got a problem.”

Carpenter anticipated that no weddings would take place until the case is completely resolved. Andrade said he believes everybody has a right to be happy.

“If I get married to someone I adore and I want to die with, don’t deny me that privilege,” he said.

-- Anna Gorman in West Hollywood

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