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Prop 8 Hearing Adjourned. What's Next for Same-Sex Marriage?

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During a hearing today before a three-judge panel before the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco, arguments were presented in an effort to determine what the next steps are in the legal battle to uphold, or strike down, California's controversial same-sex marriage ban, Proposition 8. The hearing was broadcast over C-SPAN, an usual instance of cameras allowed in a Federal court.

"Charles Cooper, a lawyer who argued in favor of Prop. 8, said marriage exists for society to recognize relationships between men and women that can lead to children," summarizes LA Now.

However, lawyers for the plaintiffs, who believe Prop 8 is unconstitutional, as was also determined previously by Judge Vaughan Walker, cited legal precedent in cases involving interracial marriage, as well as the US Constitution's 14th Amendment, which accords all individuals the right to marry.

At issue was who had the right to appeal Walker's decision, particularly because California's chief lawmakers, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and Attorney General and Governor-elect Jerry Brown, did not pursue an appeal.

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What is next for the state of same-sex marriage in California? It is likely the case will move ahead, possibly all the way to the Supreme Court. "Legal experts say a decision could be at least a month away, if not longer," notes KTLA. "The ruling could then be appealed to a larger panel of the 9th Circuit and up to the U.S. Supreme Court."