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Same-Sex Marriage Now Legal in California

Jun 28, 2013

Supporters of same-sex marriage gathered outside Fresno City Hall on Wednesday June 26, 2013 to celebrate the U.S. Supreme Court's decision.
Credit Ezra Romero / Valley Public Radio

Same-sex marriage is once again legal in California.  The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has cleared the way for marriages to begin – effective immediately.  Ben Adler has more from Sacramento.

The appeals court’s action was expected – but it wasn’t expected this soon, just two days after the U.S. Supreme Court effectively nullified California’s ban on same-sex marriage.  The court originally said its stay of a lower court’s ruling overturning Proposition 8 would remain in effect for at least 25 days.  But late this afternoon, the appeals court issued the briefest of orders: “The stay in the above matter is dissolved effective immediately.”

The move means gay and lesbian couples should be able to obtain marriage licenses from California county clerks right away.  Just after the Supreme Court’s ruling Wednesday, Governor Jerry Brown ordered the clerks to begin issuing the licenses as soon as the stay was lifted.

Same-sex marriages are now legal in California for the first time since 2008 – when they were allowed for a few months before voters approved Prop 8.