California Supreme Court Overturns Gay Marriage Ban

The California Supreme Court ruled 4-3 today to overturn state laws prohibiting same-sex marriage. The court ruled that such laws violate the California constitution, which they said “guarantees same-sex couples the same substantive constitutional rights as opposite-sex couples to choose one’s life partner and enter with that person into a committed, officially recognized, and protected family relationship,” reports Reuters.

Couples celebrated the decision across the state. “What a day for San Francisco, what a day for California, what a day for America, what a day for equality,” San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom told cheering crowds at San Francisco City Hall, according to the New York Times.

California now joins Massachusetts as the only states to allow gay marriage. However, a coalition of anti-gay rights groups is attempting to place a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage on the November California state ballot, according to the Associated Press. The California Secretary of State is expected to rule by the end of next month on whether or not the group’s petition gathered enough signatures to qualify for the ballot.


Reuters 5/15/08; New York Times 5/15/08; Associated Press 5/15/08

Support eh ERA banner