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Calif. AG: Allow same-sex marriages in interim

March 1, 2011 12:00:00 AM PST
California Attorney General Kamala Harris asked the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals Tuesday to lift the stay on same-sex marriages until a Proposition 8 appeal is resolved.

Judge Vaughn Walker ruled Proposition 8 unconstitutional. Prop. 8 prohibits same-sex couples from marrying in California.

Harris said Tuesday the appeal is not likely to overturn Walker's ruling, and that by allowing same-sex civil marriages, "there is no injury that the proponents of Proposition 8 will suffer." By denying the marriage right, Harris said, due process and equal protection of same-sex couples was being violated.

Harris said, "Both by the United States Attorney General's conclusion that classifications based on sexual orientation cannot survive constitutional scrutiny and by this Court's certification order to the California Supreme Court, which seriously questions the Court's jurisdiction to decide the merits of the case."

The California Attorney General's longstanding position, Harris told the Ninth Circuit Tuesday, is that Proposition 8 "violates the equal protection clause of the Fourteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution."