Gay Marriage Opponents Call for Rehearing

SAN FRANCISCO (CN) – Proponents of California’s defeated gay marriage ban have asked for the full 9th Circuit to rehear the case, claiming a three-judge panel got it wrong when it determined that the initiative unconstitutionally targeted same-sex couples for no rational reason.
In a petition filed Tuesday, attorneys for backers of Proposition 8 say California has an “indisputable interest in responsible procreation,” and that the state should be able to regulate sexual relationships and promote a traditional definition of marriage to encourage childbearing. “Indeed, prior to the recent movement to redefine marriage to include same-sex relationships, it was commonly understood, without a hint of controversy, that the institution of marriage owed its very existence to society’s vital interest in responsible procreation and childrearing,” they claim.
They also impugned the panel’s determination that former Chief U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker, who first found the voter initiative unconstitutional in August 2010, had no obligation to disclose his own same-sex relationship.
The 9th Circuit has no deadline for deciding whether to rehear the case en banc. The dispute is expected to eventually make its way to the U.S. Supreme Court.

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