San Francisco, CA, August 12, 2010 — U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker today refused to stay his ruling in Perry v. Schwarzenegger, in which he struck down Proposition 8 (Prop 8), the state marriage amendment defining marriage as the union of one woman and one man in the California Constitution. In November 2008, California voters amended their state constitution by passing Prop 8, and the California Supreme Court upheld the marriage amendment. This current challenge is in federal court.
Without a stay of the August 4 ruling, Prop 8 is enjoined, meaning that people in California will be able to obtain same-sex marriage licenses. Judge Walker's ruling today states that effective August 18 at 5:00 p.m. PT, the State of California is ordered to stop enforcing Prop 8. Same-sex marriages will resume. In the meantime, Judge Walker's refusal to stay his opinion will be appealed to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.
Except for this case, Liberty Counsel has represented the Campaign for California Families to defend the state's marriage laws since 2004 and has argued at the trial, appellate and state Supreme Court levels.
Mathew Staver, Founder of Liberty Counsel and Dean of Liberty University School of Law, commented: "It is outrageous that Judge Walker refused to stay his ruling. This is a classic example of radical individualism and judicial activism. Judge Walker obviously has not learned the lesson of 2008, when the California Supreme Court refused to stay its decision on marriage. That decision was reversed in short order, but it caused a huge disruption. Staying the effect of Judge Walker's ruling pending the appeal is the only logical thing to do in this case. This case has a high probability of being overturned on appeal. It makes no sense for one person to set aside a state constitutional amendment, radically change the longstanding status quo, and then later be reversed. The disruption will be enormous if this decision is not stayed. In the end, the commonsense and constitutional definition of marriage as one man and one woman will be upheld."