On Tuesday, the Ninth US Circuit Court of Appeals refused to review a panel’s decision that Proposition 8 is unconstitutional. Prop 8 is the infamous constitutional ban on same-sex marriage approved by the voters in California in response to the state Supreme Court ruling that same-sex couples have the legal right to purchase marriage licenses.
“Proponents of Proposition 8 filed the Ninth Circuit full court appeal, asking it to overturn a decision by a three-judge panel of the circuit last February. That panel decision found that California’s ban on same-sex marriage violates the federal constitution by stripping from same-sex couples a right they had (to marry) prior to passage of Proposition 8. In order for a limited en banc (full) panel of the court to have heard the appeal (11 judges), at least 14 of the circuit’s 26 active judges would have had to say another review is warranted.”
An 11 judge panel declined to review the case, and only four of the court’s 27 active judges wanted the case re-heard.
The next stop for this case is the US Supreme Court, where conservative Justices have the chance to prove that they really give a damn about keeping government out of people’s personal lives, but for now, the LGBT community has another victory to celebrate. For now, however, the stay on same-sex California will remain enforced in California until the issue is resolved.