US Appeals Court
Upholds Decision to Strike Down California Gay Marriage Ban
June 5, 2012
A U.S. federal appeals court in California has upheld is decision to
strike down the state's homosexual marriage ban as unconstitutional.
The appeals court refused to reconsider the February decision by a
three-judge panel. Same-sex marriage supporters call Tuesday's ruling a
victory for justice. Opponents say they will take the case to the U.S.
Same-sex marriage was briefly legal in California in 2008, before voters
approved a ban called Proposition 8.
A panel of judges on the court of appeals voted 2-to-1 in February that
Proposition 8 was unconstitutional. But the legality of gay and lesbian
marriage in California will remain undecided until the Supreme Court
hears the case.
marriage is legal in eight U.S. states and Washington, D.C., but it is
not recognized by the federal government.
A U.S. appeals court in the state of Massachusetts ruled last week that
the federal law defining marriage as a union between a man and a woman
unconstitutionally denies benefits to same-sex couples who are legally
married in the state.
President Barack Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder have said they
will no longer defend the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act in federal
courts. President Obama publicly declared his support for same-sex
marriage last month.