Thursday, May 15, 2008

California OKs gay and lesbian marriage

From the Human Rights Campaign:

Today, the California Supreme Court reversed a lower court decision and ruled that same-sex couples have the same right to marry as different-sex couples under the state constitution. In a landmark decision, the court ruled that it is a violation of the state constitution to deny same-sex couples the right to marry, and that it is not enough to provide rights to same-sex couples through a separate system of domestic partnerships.

The court’s decision involved several consolidated cases, collectively referred to as In re Marriage Cases. The cases were filed in 2004. In March 2005, a state trial court ruled that, under the state constitution, same-sex couples must be permitted to marry. In October 2006, the California Court of Appeal reversed the trial court in a 2-1 decision. The California Supreme Court’s decision today (.doc; pp. 11-12; .pdf is here) overrules the Court of Appeal’s ruling:
Right now, our opponents are raising millions of dollars to overturn this ruling through a state constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage. For months, HRC and Equality California, as part of the Equality for All coalition, have been working to educate voters on the harmful effects of this amendment and counteract the efforts by anti-gay conservative groups to place this amendment on the November ballot.

HRC has set up a special fund – the HRC California Marriage PAC – to fight against the anti-marriage ballot initiative in California. CLICK HERE for more information on how to contribute to the efforts to defeat the marriage ban.

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