The California Supreme Court heard oral arguments on Mar 4 concerning the constitutionality of banning same-sex marriage in the state. A ruling is due within 90 days.
Three hours were allotted for seven justices to hear oral arguments in the case, which is a consolidation of four lawsuits challenging a voter-approved ban on same-sex marriage, and two countersuits defending the ban.
A law defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman was passed by the state legislature in 1977, and reaffirmed by voters in a ballot measure in 2000. Then, in 2004, San Francisco challenged the law when its mayor ordered the city clerk to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. The Supreme Court nullified those unions.
When Judge Richard Kramer of the San Francisco Superior Court ruled against the marriage ban in 2005, a state appeals court overruled him. The Supreme Court then agreed to hear the case.
Republican Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger twice has vetoed bills that would lift the same-sex ban. He states that this decision should be left to the voters and the Supreme Court.