Judge Who Axed Ban on|Gay Marriage to Retire

      SAN FRANCISCO (CN) – After 21 years on the bench, Chief U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker announced Wednesday that he is retiring at the end of this year. Walker, who recently struck down California’s ban on gay marriages, issued a letter to President Obama saying he plans to “return to the private sector” on Dec. 31.

      “Concluding 21 years of judicial service, I leave the bench with the highest respect and regard for the federal judiciary, its judges and their staff and the essential role they fulfill in our constitutional system,” Walker wrote in his resignation letter to President Obama.
      Walker has been a federal judge since 1990 and served as Chief District Judge since 2004.

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