Prop 8 Falls in Court Ruling

Marriage equality to be restored to gay and lesbian couples in California

In the second of two dramatic decisions on same-sex marriage today, the Supreme Court ruled 5-4 to strike down California’s Proposition 8. Justices Scalia, Ginsburg, Breyer and Kagan and Roberts ruled for the majority. Writing for the majority, Roberts said the proponents did not have standing to bring the case, upholding the lower court’s ruling invalidating Prop 8.

The ruling only applies to same-sex couples in California, who will be able to marry legally in that state.

Proposition 8 was a voter-approved ballot measure that passed in November 2008 with about 53 percent of the vote. It overturned a California Supreme Court ruling that granted marriage equality, passed the previous June.

A lower court ruled in 2010 that Prop 8 “fails to advance any rational basis in singling out gay men and lesbians for denial of a marriage license,” in the words of Judge Vaughn Walker. “Indeed, the evidence shows Proposition 8 does nothing more than enshrine in the California Constitution the notion that opposite-sex couples are superior to same-sex couples.” That ruling was upheld in 2012.

Go to for ongoing updates on the Prop 8 decision.

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