SAN FRANCISCO – Senator Mark Leno (D-San Francisco) applauds Chief U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker’s decision to end the stay of his ruling that declares Proposition 8 unconstitutional. In lifting the stay, same-sex couples again have the right to marry in California. Judge Walker’s ruling invalidates Prop 8, the statewide initiative approved by voters in 2008 that narrowly defined marriage between one man and one woman.
“I am pleased with today’s decision that once again allows all loving same-sex couples to make lifelong commitments to one another through marriage,” said Senator Leno. “Many couples and their families have long been denied the respect and validation that comes with marriage, despite any logical reason to treat same-sex couples differently than opposite-sex couples. I am elated that I will again have the opportunity to perform ceremonies for caring and devoted couples who want nothing more than to honor their love in a universally understood way – through marriage.”
“This is a long awaited and hard fought victory in the larger civil rights movement for marriage equality, but it is not the last. The promise of our treasured democracy, liberty and justice for all, has been fulfilled today. Let the summer of love begin.”
Senator Mark Leno represents California’s 3rd Senate District, which includes Marin and portions of San Francisco and Sonoma Counties. He is the first openly gay man elected to the California Senate and one of the first two openly gay men elected to the Assembly. As an Assemblymember, he authored California’s first bills that would have given same-sex couples the freedom to marry. The Legislature passed the marriage bill in 2005 and again in 2007, but both measures were vetoed by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.