Proposition 8 proponents appeal federal judge’s refusal to overturn Prop 8 ruling


Proposition 8 proponents have filed an appeal challenging Chief U.S. District Judge James Ware’s June 14 decision to uphold last year’s ruling that the law banning same-sex marriage in California was unconstitutional.

U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker in San Francisco last year struck down California’s same-sex marriage ban, known as Proposition 8. He later openly discussed his own gay relationship after retiring from the bench earlier this year.

Supporters of the ban now say his ruling was compromised and should be vacated. But Chief U.S. District Judge James Ware disagreed earlier this month, ruling that granting such a request would send a message that minority judges could not rule in civil rights cases.

Attorneys for, the anti-gay marriage group defending California’s ban, said in court papers filed late last week that they would appeal Ware’s decision.

The appeal was filed Monday before the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, the same court that is hearing an appeal of Walker’s ruling.

On June 14, Ware denied the motion to vacate the ruling, and said there was no federal precedent for disqualifying a judge solely because he shares a characteristic — such as sexual orientation — with a litigant.

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