California same sex marriage law

AB , authored by Assemblyman John Burton, would've deleted gender requirements enacted in It failed to garner enough votes for passages and died in the Assembly. Following Senator Knight's failure to pass the California Defense of Marriage Act on two different occasions in the Legislature, Prop 22 was created as an initiative statute to add section Both proposals never saw passage. In the March 7, primary election , Proposition 22 was adopted by a vote of The one-sentence code section explicitly defined the union of a man and a woman as the only valid or recognizable form of marriage in the State of California.

Proposition 22 was authored by State Senator William J. Knight , and the measure was dubbed the "Knight initiative" in an attempt to link it to the failed "Briggs Initiative" Proposition 6 of that would have banned gays and lesbians from working as teachers in California's public schools.


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The California Supreme Court invalidated the results of Proposition 22 in On September 2, , the California Senate approved the bill and on September 6, the California State Assembly followed suit with a vote of , making California's Legislature the first in the nation to approve a same-sex marriage bill without court pressure. The next day, September 7, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger indicated he would veto the bill, citing Proposition 22 , which had passed with the approval of a majority of voters five years earlier.

Like the statutes amended by AB , Prop 22 prohibited the state from recognizing same-sex marriages, but as an initiative statute, it was not affected by AB The Legislature avoided physically delivering the bill to the Governor for over two weeks, during which time advocacy groups urged Schwarzenegger to change his mind. Ultimately, the bill was delivered on September 23 and vetoed on September 29, Shortly after the newly elected Assembly was sworn in, Leno resubmitted a similar bill on December 4, Schwarzenegger wrote in his veto statement that to solve the issue of gender-neutral marriage, the California Supreme Court needed to finish its rule on the challenge which had been made to Proposition Months before the State Supreme Court's ruling, groups who opposed same-sex marriage began circulating initiative petitions.

One petition, titled the "California Marriage Protection Act" by its proponents and the "Limit on Marriage" amendment by the California Attorney General on the actual ballot gathered an estimated , valid signatures and qualified for the November 4, ballot as Proposition 8.

It superseded the part of the Supreme Court's holding that authorized the granting of marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Twelve other proposed amendments since had failed to qualify to be on the ballot. On the day after the election, the results remained uncertified. On Wednesday, November 5, , three lawsuits were filed, challenging the validity of Proposition 8 on the grounds that revoking the right of same-sex couples to marry was a constitutional "revision" rather than an "amendment", and therefore required the prior approval of two-thirds of each house of the California State Legislature.

Plaintiffs in the various suits included same-sex couples who had married or planned to marry, the cities of San Francisco and Los Angeles and the county of Santa Clara. Same-sex marriage supporters considered trying to get another ballot initiative to repeal Proposition 8 on the ballot in the election, but decided to wait. After the California Supreme Court challenge following the passage of Proposition 8, the California Supreme Court justices affirmed that all same-sex marriages performed in California before the passage of Proposition 8 continued to be valid and recognized as "marriage".

The Marriage Recognition and Family Protection Act also established that a same-sex marriage performed outside the state is recognized as "marriage" if it occurred before Proposition 8 took effect. This category also includes same-sex marriages performed before same-sex marriage became legal in California. Leno , During its passage, some concern was expressed that, by repealing the California Defense of Marriage Act , SB breached the separation of powers as the Legislature would be repealing an initiative passed by the voters.

However, the consensus of the Assembly Judiciary Committee was that the voters are no more able to pass an unconstitutional, and subsequently enjoined, statute anymore than the Legislature can.

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Perry , which collectively forbade the enforcement of any law which would prohibit same-sex couples from marrying, it was determined by the Assembly Judiciary Committee that the Legislature has the capacity to repeal enjoined statutes. On May 1, , the California State Senate passed the bill on a vote. Marriage is a personal relation arising out of a civil contract between two persons, to which the consent of the parties capable of making that contract is necessary.

It thus went back to the state Senate, which approved it by a vote of The bill became both engrossed and enrolled meaning it passed both houses in the same form.

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The bill was signed into law by Governor Jerry Brown , and took effect on January 1, They had previously changed their names to Cable-McCarthy. The parties included individuals and organizations opposed to same-sex marriage who sought to stop San Francisco from issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples. The City and County of San Francisco and numerous individuals sued the state of California seeking to overturn Proposition 22 , the existing state law that limited marriage to opposite-sex couples.

On March 14, , Judge Kramer ruled that California statutes limiting marriage to opposite-sex couples were unconstitutional. The state and organizations opposed to same-sex marriage appealed. Division Three of the First District Court of Appeal held extended oral argument on the cases on July 10, , before a three-judge panel.

In a 2-to-1 decision, the appellate court overturned the lower court. McGuiness found: The marriage statutes do not discriminate based on gender; the state's interests in "preserving the traditional definition of marriage" and "carrying out the expressed wishes of a majority of Californians" were sufficient to preserve the existing law; and challenges from the two groups opposed to same-sex marriage had to be dismissed because they lacked standing in any actual controversy on which the court could rule.

The majority emphasized that it was not the role of the court to determine whether the "traditional definition" of marriage should be maintained. In a sharply worded dissent, Justice J. Anthony Kline Presiding Justice of Division Two, sitting by designation because two Justices had recused themselves described the court's reasoning as "circular.

In November , several parties petitioned the Supreme Court of California to review the decision. On May 15, , the Supreme Court struck down California's existing statutes limiting marriage to opposite-sex couples in a ruling. After the ruling, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger issued a statement repeating his pledge to oppose Proposition 8 , the ballot initiative that would override the ruling.

San Francisco Same-Sex Marriage Attorney | SFLG

The opinion, written by Chief Justice Ronald M. George , cited the Court's decision in Perez v. Sharp where the state's interracial marriage ban was held unconstitutional. It found that "equal respect and dignity" of marriage is a "basic civil right" that cannot be withheld from same-sex couples, that sexual orientation is a protected class like race and gender, and that any classification or discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation is subject to strict scrutiny under the Equal Protection Clause of the California State Constitution.

Associate Justices Joyce L. Kennard , Kathryn Werdegar , and Carlos R. Moreno concurred. After the announcement, the Advocates for Faith and Freedom and the Alliance Defense Fund , inter alia, asked for a stay of the ruling. In a one-page order on June 4, , the court denied all petitions for rehearing or to reconsider the May 15 ruling and rejected moves to delay enforcement of the decision until after the November election, when Californians voted on a constitutional amendment to overturn the decision.

As a result, same-sex marriages took place starting in mid-June. On June 20, , gay rights groups filed suit before the California Supreme Court seeking to remove the initiative from the November ballot; their lawsuit was later dismissed on July 16, They further argued that the original petitions, which were circulated before the May 15 court decision, were misleading because the petitions said the initiative would not change the marriage laws and would have no fiscal impact.

Prior to the election date, backers of the proposition also filed a lawsuit after state Attorney General Jerry Brown changed the title of the Proposition 8 initiative from "Limit on Marriage" to "Eliminates the Right of Same-Sex Couples to Marry". On the day of the Strauss v. Constitution in a case known as Perry v.

After Gay Marriage Ruling, California Families Celebrate Equality - The New York Times

Judge Vaughn R. Walker ordered a full trial which began in January It addressed questions as wide-ranging as whether being gay diminishes one's contribution to society, affects one's ability to raise children, impairs judgment, or constitutes a mental disorder. Constitution, and on August 12, , had scheduled to deny a motion to stay the ruling throughout the appeals process.

On August 16, , Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals granted the motion to stay, ordered expedited briefing on the merits of the appeal, and directed the parties to brief the issue of why the appeal should not be dismissed for lack of standing. On June 26, , the U.

Supreme Court found that the Proposition 8 supporters did not have standing for their appeal, and thus ordered the Ninth Circuit to void their ruling, leaving Walker's decision standing. Schwarzenegger , were married shortly afterward, making them the first same-sex couple to be married in California since Proposition 8 was overturned. Proposition 8 proponents argued that the district court's injunction is applicable only to the two couples who are the plaintiffs in the case or, at most, applies to the two counties whose clerks were named as defendants.

Proposition 8

California Attorney General Kamala Harris , however, issued an analysis that the district court's injunction applies statewide and binds upon all 58 of California's counties based on the interpretation of California Supreme Court's decision in Lockyer v. City and County of San Francisco , [82] stating that county clerks are state officials under supervision of Department of Public Health for the limited purpose of issuing marriage licenses and are thus bound by the injunction.

Governor Brown then directed all county clerks to comply with district court ruling. O'Connell CA S.

Timeline: Same-sex marriage through the years

Arguing that the district court lacks authority to grant relief beyond the named plaintiffs or, even if the district court has such authority, its injunction only binds to two county clerks who are named defendants. Perry held that Proposition 8 proponents lack legal standing to appeal district court's decision, the decision of the Court of Appeal for the Ninth Circuit was vacated with no legal effect or precedent. California Supreme Court ordered to parties to brief on the merits and whether the stay should be issued [84] and on July 15, it denied the application for stay.

Dronenburg Jr. Brown CA S. Ct docket: S ] asking for the California Supreme Court halt the issuance of marriage license to same-sex couples and application to stay during litigation which the court denied on July City officials in San Francisco claimed that although the marriages were prohibited by state law, the state law was invalidated by the Equal Protection Clause.

The Mayor echoed this view, permitting the marriages because he believed the state law was unconstitutional.

However, legislators and groups opposing same-sex marriages quickly reacted, filing a suit and requesting a court order to prevent the city from performing the ceremonies. Additionally, the California state agency that records marriages stated that altered forms, including any marriage licenses issued to same-sex couples, would not be registered.

The legal validity of the marriages was tested in the courts, and the marriages were ultimately voided by the state Supreme Court. Officials in Berkeley and Oakland , in nearby Alameda County , expressed interest in joining San Francisco, [90] [91] but were unable to do so because marriage licenses are handled at a county, rather than at a city, level. San Francisco was able to issue its own licenses because San Francisco is both a city and a county. Marriage licenses were issued to 4, same-sex couples in before the state Supreme Court issued its stay.

Of those same-sex marriage licenses issued, 82 couples either decided not to go through with a marriage or failed to register their marriage with the county before the state Supreme Court stay was issued, meaning 3, completed same-sex marriages were registered in the county. Of the other states, the top five states represented included 32 couples each from Washington and Oregon , 24 from Nevada , 20 from New York and 16 from Florida. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Know Your Rights: Same-Sex Marriage

Israel Mexico 1. Same-sex union legislation Same-sex union court cases Timeline of same-sex marriage Recognition of same-sex unions in Africa Recognition of same-sex unions in Asia Recognition of same-sex unions in Europe Recognition of same-sex unions in the Americas Recognition of same-sex unions in Oceania Marriage privatization Divorce of same-sex couples Domestic partnership Military policy Adoption Listings by country LGBT rights by country or territory.

See also: History of marriage in California and San Francisco same-sex weddings. See also: Same-sex marriage legislation in the United States.