Calif. High Court Asked to Hear Gay Lawsuits

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California Attorney General Jerry Brown says the state supreme court should review the lawsuits against Proposition 8, but he says it should still go into effect.

"The petitions raise issues of statewide importance, implicating not only California's marriage laws but also the initiative process and the Constitution itself," Brown argued in his filing.

"This court can provide certainty and finality in this matter," he said.

Prop 8 passed on Election Day with 52 percent of the vote. It overturned the high court's decision last May legalizing gay marriage in the state. The new law defines marriage as the union between one man and one woman, and bans same-sex marriage.

Opponents of Prop 8 say it's unconstitutional and want the state high court to overturn it. They claim that voters to do have the authority to make such a constitutional change.

However, there's no deadline for the court to decide if it will take the cases.

Prop 8 Supporters Confident

Andrew Pugno, an attorney for the Yes on 8 campaign, said the measure's supporters are so confident the Supreme Court would uphold the initiative, they want the court to take the cases and resolve the question quickly.

"There is no question Proposition 8 is exactly the type of amendment the framers of the Constitution envisioned for the people to be able to enact," Pugno said.

Pugno also said the Protect Marriage coalition is less confident about the attorney general's sincere interest in defending the gay marriage ban in court. That's why his coalition asked the court for permission to intervene in the cases Monday.

"Everyone knows the AG opposed Proposition 8, did everything he could to undermine it and it still passed anyway," he said. "There is little hope he would make much effort at all to defend Prop. 8."

Both the attorney general and Protect Marriage asked the court to reject a request from gay marriage supporters for a stay that would allow same-sex couples to resume marrying in California until the broader legal issues are settled.

Schwarzenegger Thinks Court Made The Right Decision

During an interview Sunday on ABC's This Week, California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger told host George Stephanopoulos he thinks the state supreme court did the right thing in May when it ruled the state's same-sex marriage ban was unconstitutional.

He likened the California initiative to the 1948 Supreme Court case, in which the banning of marriage between blacks and whites was deemed unconstitutional.

Schwarzenegger also said he believes that marriage is between a man and a woman, but wouldn't want to force his will on anyone.

Schwarzenegger said he will ask Brown for an opinion on whether the gay marriages already performed in California are legal before he issues any type of state order verifying their legality.

Sources: The Associated Press, San Jose Mercury News, ABC News

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