CA to Decide Gay Marriage Issue Again

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Californians will get to vote again on the issue of gay marriage and their vote could overturn a ruling by the state supreme court.

On November 4, voters will decide whether to approve a state constitutional amendment that defines marriage as a union between a man and a woman.

The California Family Council submitted more than one million signatures supporting the ballot initiative.

"It took 100 days, said the CFC's Everitt Rice. "It was the fastest collection of signatures we have ever seen."

Pro-family groups believe the ballot initiative should force the state supreme court to delay its May 15 decision. That decision legalized same-sex marriages in The Golden State, despite a vote in 2000 in which Californians defined marriage as heterosexual.

There's also pressure on the court from ten other states. Their attorneys general argue that the California court ruling could affect similar litigation in their courts.

The San Francisco city attorney has filed a letter opposing their request.

"I don't think that's going to happen," said city attorney Dennis Herrera. "So I am anticipating the court's order will take place on June 16 and marriages will start happening on June 17 and that's what i'm looking forward to."

If the court refuses to delay its ruling, legal marriages for homosexuals can begin on June 17. But if voters approve the marriage amendment in November, those same-sex marriages may be declared null and void.

The November vote could be a close one. Gay advocates insist they have the momentum for victory.

"We have strong support from Governor Schwarzenegger," said Shannon Minter of the National Center for Lesbian Rights. "We have a wonderful historic decision from a court with six out of seven justices appointed by Republican governors."

However, pro-family groups believe the state supreme court ruling could galvanize conservatives and remind them just how high the stakes really are.

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Heather Sells

Heather Sells

CBN News

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