Gay judge overturns California's same-sex marriage ban

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California, Aug 5(ANI): American Judge Vaugh Walker, one of three openly gay federal judges in the US, has overturned a California ban on same-sex marriage, ruling that the Proposition 8 ballot initiative was unconstitutional.

The ruling gave opponents of the controversial Proposition 8 ballot a major victory.

"Proposition 8 fails to advance any rational basis in singling out gay men and lesbians for denial of a marriage license," Fox News quoted Walker, as having written in a 136-page ruling that laid out in precise detail why the ban does not pass constitutional muster.

"Indeed, the evidence shows Proposition 8 does nothing more than enshrine in the California Constitution the notion that opposite-sex couples are superior to same-sex couples," he added.

However, despite the ruling, gay marriage will not be allowed to resume, as Walker said that he wants to decide whether his order should be suspended while the proponents pursue their appeal in the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

The judge ordered both sides to submit written arguments on the issue by August 6.

The supporters of the ban argued that it necessary to safeguard the traditional understanding of marriage, and to encourage responsible childbearing.

California voters had passed the ban as Proposition 8 in November 2008, five months after the state Supreme Court legalized gay marriage.

Currently, same-sex couples can only legally wed in Massachusetts, Iowa, Connecticut, Vermont, New Hampshire and Washington, D.C. (ANI)

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