California Supreme Court to consider key issue in battle over same-sex marriage
The California Supreme Court will decide Wednesday whether to plunge back into the legal battle over same-sex marriage.
The state high court, meeting in closed session, will review a request by the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals to determine whether Proposition 8’s sponsors have legal authority to defend the ballot measure.
Depending on the court’s ruling, the 9th Circuit could either dismiss the Proposition 8 appeal on procedural grounds -- limiting the case’s effect to California -- or rule on federal constitutional questions that would affect same-sex marriage throughout the country.
A federal judge in San Francisco struck down Proposition 8 in August, ruling after a 12-day trial that the 2008 ballot measure violated equal protection guarantees under the U.S. Constitution. Experts testified during the trial that one’s sexual orientation was largely fixed and that matrimony benefits the families of gays and lesbians.
California state officials refused to appeal the ruling. Now the 9th Circuit must determine whether Proposition 8’s sponsors, ProtectMarriage.com, have legal standing to challenge the trial court's decision.
-- Maura Dolan