The nation’s most populous state will resume same-sex marriages, after the Supreme Court killed Prop 8 today, which was a referendum where voters stripped the freedom to marry from gay couples in California. With the addition of California, nearly a third of Americans now live in a state with the freedom to marry.
“This is a golden ruling for same-sex couples in the Golden State,” said TWO Executive Director Wayne Besen. “This is a huge step forward, with national implications, because it nearly doubles the number of people who live in states where marriage equality is the law of the land. Today’s rulings are a huge shot of momentum and foreshadow a future of full equality. Today we will celebrate. Tomorrow, we get back to work because there are many battles ahead.”
Chief Justice John Roberts, speaking for the 5-4 majority, said the private sponsors of Prop. 8 did not have legal standing to appeal after the ballot measure was struck down by a federal judge in San Francisco.
“We have never before upheld the standing of a private party to defend the constitutionality of a state statute when state officials have chosen not to,” he said. “We decline to do so for the first time here.”
Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer, Antonin Scalia and Elena Kagan joined to form the majority.