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Proposition 8

It's A Free Country ®

Explainer: Where the States Stand on Gay Marriage

Tuesday, February 07, 2012

California's Proposition 8, a law banning same-sex marriage in the state, has been ruled unconstitutional by a federal appeals panel. Meanwhile, a bill to allow same-sex marriage in Washington state has passed the State Senate and is on its way to the House.

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It's A Free Blog

Deciding Who Has the Right to Defend the Gay Marriage Ban

Monday, December 06, 2010

Today, lawyers on both sides of the gay marriage fight will be back in court. This is the appeal from the lower court ruling on California’s Proposition 8, in which the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals is being asked to decide whether the United States Constitution guarantees the right to gay marriage. 

But it is not that simple. As is often the case with complex legal stories, the reporting has been a little bit off the mark on the primary legal issue in the case. The issue is not only whether gays have a right to marry. The primary issue before the judges is whether the case can be appealed at all.

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The Takeaway

Learning From 9 Years of Gay Marriage in The Netherlands

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

The marriage of same-sex couples is on hold again in California while the Ninth Circuit Court prepares to hear an appeal by the backers of Prop 8. Those who supported the ballot initiative, which led to the banning of same-sex unions in the state, are challenging a judge's recent decision that found the ban unconstitutional. 

The United States is not the first country to discuss these issues, and other countries have experience we might be able to learn from when considering same-sex unions. Back in 2001, The Netherlands became the first country to legalize gay marriage. We speak with an author who traveled there to document how marriage affected Dutch gay couples and wider Dutch society.

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The Takeaway

Proposition 8 Overturned; One California Couple Celebrates

Thursday, August 05, 2010

The fight for same-sex marriage in California has been a long one. In 2004, Gavin Newsom surprised the state by opening marriage licenses to all couples, gay or straight. It was quickly shut down, but it opened up a flood of lawsuits. In June 2008, the California Supreme Court overturned the same-sex marriage ban. However, just a few months after, on November 8, a ballot measure called proposition 8 was passed by 52 percent of voters, and it officially defined marriage in California as between a man and a woman. 

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The Takeaway

Questions on Prop 8, Birthright Citizenship Ignite Debate on 14th Amendment

Thursday, August 05, 2010

This week, we discuss two big stories, each of which considers the original intent of the 14th Amendment. Known as the "Reconstruction Amendment," as it passed in the aftermath of the Civil War, this clause of the Constitution guarantees U.S. citizenship for anyone born in the United States. It prohibits state governments from depriving anyone of "life, liberty, or property, without due process of law," and mandates "equal protection of the laws" for all citizens.

On Wednesday, a federal judge in California ruled Proposition 8, the voter-backed ballot measure to prohibit same-sex marriage, unconstitutional based on "due process" and "equal protection" grounds: both clauses in the 14th Amendment.

Meanwhile, on Capitol Hill, several Republican senators are proposing to repeal or change the Amendment. They say we should no longer automatically give citizenship to American-born children of illegal immigrants.

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The Takeaway

Judge Overturns California's Gay Marriage Ban

Thursday, August 05, 2010

A federal judge has overturned Proposition 8, the California ballot measure that defines marriage as between one man and one woman.  The measure passed with 52 percent of votes in November 2008. Yesterday, Judge Vaughn Walker ruled it unconstitutional on 14th Amendment grounds of due process and equal protection under the law. 

In a decision that ran more than 100 pages, Judge Vaughn Walker stated that "Proposition 8 fails to advance any rational basis in singling out gay men and lesbians for denial of a marriage license. Indeed, the evidence shows Proposition 8 does nothing more than enshrine in the California Constitution the notion that opposite sex couples are superior to same-sex couples."

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The Takeaway

Closing Arguments Get Underway in California Gay Marriage Trial

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Closing arguments are scheduled for today in a federal trial that will address the constitutionality of Proposition 8 - the controversial amendment to California's constitution that reinstated a ban on gay marriage in the state in 2008, after it had been legal for some months.

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The Takeaway

Switching Sides and Breaking Through at Sundance

Friday, January 22, 2010

The Sundance Film Festival kicked off in Park City, Utah, last night. We talk this morning with two directors whose films are featured this year about their big break and about crossing over (both literally and figuratively). 

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The Takeaway

Prop 8 Fight Goes to Federal Court

Monday, January 11, 2010

The fight over gay marriage resumes in California today with Perry v. Schwarzenegger ... and you may be able to watch it on YouTube, tonight.  Two same sex-couples are suing the enforcers of California's Proposition 8 on grounds that the gay marriage ban violates their federal constitutional rights. This might lay the groundwork for an appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court. The trial will be the first federal court case in the U.S. to be broadcast on YouTube. Kenji Yoshino, professor of law at New York University, has been following the case.

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