A Collaboration with the University of Pittsburgh

Ninth Circuit lifts California's ban on same sex marriage

The US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit [official website] on Friday announced in a one-sentence order [opinion, PDF] that the ban on same-sex marriages "is dissolved effective immediately". This order comes after the Supreme Court's decision on Wednesday that upheld the invalidation of Proposition 8 [text, PDF; JURIST news archive]. After Friday's court order, California Governor Jerry Brown [official website] declared that same-sex marriage "is now legal in California" [text; JURIST report] and that marriage licenses must be issued "immediately."

Proposition 8 was struck down [JURIST report] in 2010 by US District Judge Vaughn Walker, then-governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, former attorney general and current Governor Brown, who were originally defendants in the lawsuit. The defendants, however, declined to continue defending the measure on appeal [JURIST report]. This left groups like Protect Marriage [advocacy website] and others to continue to defend the law and appeal the ruling. In 2012, opponents of Proposition 8 urged [JURIST report] the US Supreme Court not to grant the petition for a writ of certiorari submitted by Proposition 8 supporters. Also in 2012, the Ninth Circuit denied a petition filed by supporters of Proposition 8 to rehear their case before the entire court. Wednesday's 5-4 opinion by Chief Justice John Roberts was joined by Justices Antonin Scalia, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer and Elena Kagan. Justice Anthony Kennedy filed a dissenting opinion, joined by Justices Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito and Sonia Sotomayor.

About Paper Chase

Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

© Copyright JURIST Legal News and Research Services, Inc., 2013.