Interest groups across the ideological spectrum said they would step up their efforts after the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled California’s same-sex marriage ban unconstitutional today.
“We will be explaining the ramifications of this across the country,” said Bruce Hausknecht, judicial analyst for the anti-gay marriage Focus on the Family’s Citizen Link. “Judges do not have the right to redefine marriage.”
The 9th Circuit ruling said that California’s Proposition 8 was unconstitutional. Hausknecht said that Prop 8’s backers would likely appeal to the 9th Circuit, requesting an 11-judge en banc panel to issue an opinion. Either way, he predicted the case is likely to be appealed to the Supreme Court.
On the other side, the Human Rights Campaign, a gay civil rights group, cheered the decision authored by Judge Stephen Reinhardt and joined by Judge Michael Daly Hawkins. The third judge, Randy Smith, dissented.
“Today’s decision affirms what we all know to be true — our Constitution protects the basic civil rights of all Americans, including lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people,” HRC President Joe Solmonese said in a statement.
Solmonese also singled out the lead attorneys in the case, David Boies and Ted Olson, a former solicitor general in the George W. Bush administration.
“This is not the end of the road, for this case or for the larger struggle for marriage equality,” Solmonese said. “We must all continue our work — in courthouses and statehouses, in church pews and living rooms — until equality is reality for LGBT people and our families everywhere.”
Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., right, hugs Harold Schaitberger, General President of the International Association of Fire Fighters, after the Congressman spoke at the IAFF's Legislative Conference General Session at the Hyatt Regency on Capitol Hill, March 9, 2015. The day featured addresses by members of Congress and Vice President Joe Biden.