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Gay marriage: California's Prop. 8 lands on doorstep of US Supreme Court (+video)

US Supreme Court is asked to hear California's Prop. 8 case. If the justices agree to hear that one and federal Defense of Marriage Act cases in the next term, it would mark the most extensive and important examination of gay rights in the US ever.

Ben Deci talks to one of the attorneys who asked the US Supreme to hear the defense of Proposition 8, which has already been deemed unconstitutional by lower courts.
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Proponents of California’s ban on same-sex marriage asked the US Supreme Court on Tuesday to reverse a lower court decision striking down the state’s 2008 constitutional amendment that had defined marriage as a union between a man and a woman.

In a 39-page petition, Washington lawyer Charles Cooper urged the high court to take up the case and rule that state voters retain the ability to decide for themselves how to define marriage without violating federal constitutional rights.

“While our Constitution does not mandate the traditional definition of marriage, neither does our Constitution condemn it,” Mr. Cooper wrote.

“Rather,” he said, “it leaves the definition of marriage in the hands of the People, to be resolved through the democratic process in each State.”

The California appeal arrives at the high court at the same time as several cases challenging the federal Defense of Marriage Act, which limits federal benefits to married opposite-sex couples.

Should the high court agree to hear the Prop. 8 and DOMA cases, the combination of both issues during the same term would mark the most extensive and important Supreme Court examination of gay rights in the US ever.


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