Ratifying the results of last year’s popular vote, the California Supreme Court upheld a ban on same-gender marriages yesterday, sparking fierce debate between critics and supporters of the move.
The ruling is based on the passage last November of Proposition 8 which sought to restrict the definition of marriage to opposite-sex couples.
Family Research Council President Tony Perkins has praised the court’s decision.
"California’s constitution gives its citizens the right of self-governance and we are pleased that the court resisted demands to strip the right of the people to amend the state constitution," he stated.
"Even this widely-recognized liberal court understands that overturning Proposition 8 would represent a repudiation of the state constitution it is sworn to uphold," Perkins added.
Meanwhile, supporters of gay marriage, who called the decision a sad day for freedom and fairness, have said the civil rights struggle this case represents has not yet ended.
"Across the state, community gatherings will demonstrate the continuing support for marriage equality and prepare for taking the necessary next steps forward toward securing civil marriage equality at the state and federal levels," LA Gay & Lesbian Center said in a statement.
Yesterday’s decision preserves the 18,000 same-sex marriages performed last year between the justices’ ruling in May that same-sex marriage was constitutional and the passage of Proposition 8.