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AG Jerry Brown, Prop. 8 defender. now seeks ban on same same-sex marriage ban

December 19, 2008 |  6:15 pm

Hey, it's legal stuff. Who said it has to make sense?

California's Democratic Attorney General Jerry Brown was for defending the recent voters' approval of Prop. 8 banning same-sex marriage before he was against it.California's Democratic Attorney General Jerry Brown announces a surprise challenge to the successful Proposition banning same-sex marriage after saying he intended to defend it as the state's chief attorney

Less than an hour ago Brown, who has his eyes on the governor's chair again come 2010, made the surprise announcement that while he used to think he had to defend any legal challenges to Prop. 8 as California's chief state attorney, he's changed his mind and is attacking it.

Now, he's filed his own legal challenge because, he says, the successful proposition "deprives people of the right to marry, an aspect of liberty that the Supreme Court has concluded is guaranteed by the California Constitution."

It is usually the attorney general's duty to defend the state's laws, including those enacted by the people of California through the proposition process.

But after studying the matter, he says, he came to the conclusion that gay rights activists were correct in arguing that the proposition amounted to a constitutional revision, instead of a more limited amendment.

Brown added: "Proposition 8 must be invalidated because the amendment process cannot be used to extinguish fundamental constitutional rights without compelling justification."

Oh, and by the way, do you know who's the lead defender of the proposition before the state's Supreme Court? It's Kenneth Starr. THE Kenneth Starr.

More on this by Jessica Garrison over at L.A.Now now and later.

--Andrew Malcolm

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Photo credit: Associated Press